In January, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had proposed of permitting 10 micrograms per litre of potential cancer-causing contaminant “bromate” in bottled water.
This Saturday, the FSSAI claimed that the proposed new standard for contaminant “bromate” at 10 micrograms per litre in packaged drinking water is in line with best international practices, reported Business Standard.
However, the proposal is in the draft standard and it would be finalised after getting inputs from stakeholders, although the time of receiving feedback is over.
At a time when bromide presence is not allowed in bottled water, the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre scientists, in January 2015, published a research showing high levels of bromate contamination in 27 percent of the bottled water samples they had picked up. On an average 10.7 microgram of bromate was present in per litre of water.
The FSSAI has used the reference of the US and the European Union, who have set their bromate standards to 10 micrograms per litre in packaged drinking water. But US and EU chose the bromate standard at 10 micrograms per litre back in 2005.
Harmful effects of bromate
Toxic effects of bromate salts include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, anuria and diarrhoea, varying degrees of central nervous system depression, haemolytic anaemia and pulmonary oedema. Most of these effects are reversible. Irreversible effects include renal failure and deafness, both of which have been observed following the ingestion of 240–500 mg of potassium bromate per kg of body weight.
The World Health Organization‘s stipulation on the quality of drinking water is quite clear – toxic contaminants should ideally not be present in it at all.
The Logical Indian appeals to FSSAI to not go with their current proposal and to go with the research done by esteemed organisations which state that Bromate could be a possible human carcinogen.