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FDA Proposes New Limit for Arsenic in Apple Juice

Move follows release of studies last fall showing worrisome amounts of the toxin in many brands

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"It was not a full blown, science-based number," said Michael Taylor, FDA's deputy commissioner for foods.

A limit as low as 3 parts per billion had been called for by Consumers Union, the publisher of Consumer Reports. While the FDA didn't implement that low a limit, the group still praised the agency for taking action.

"While we had proposed a lower limit, we think this is a perfectly good first step to bring apple juice in line with the current drinking water limits," Urvashi Rangan, the group's director for consumer safety, told the AP.

New limits on arsenic in rice are also being considered by the FDA. Rice is believed to have higher levels of arsenic than most foods because it is grown in water on the ground, ideal conditions for absorbing the chemical.

Responding to the Consumer Reports study in November, the Juice Products Association issued a statement saying that juice is safe for all consumers, adding the industry "adheres to FDA guidelines and juice products sold in the U.S. meet and will continue to proactively meet or exceed the federal standards," the Los Angeles Times reported.

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