Urge the FDA to ban food dyes!
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Mounting scientific evidence—and an emerging consensus among scientists who have studied the issue—demonstrate that children are harmed by synthetic food dyes.  As detailed in our recent report, Seeing Red: Time for Action on Food Dyes, studies show that susceptible children—which may number more than half-a-million in the U.S.—experience episodes of inattention, hyperactivity, or other behavioral effects, after consuming foods containing synthetic dyes.  In addition, recent research has revealed far higher levels of dyes in commonly consumed foods than was previously thought. 

Thousands of parents of affected kids confirm these findings and have sent CSPI emails detailing their families’ struggles to identify the cause and help their children.  We are enlisting their help—and the help of the interested public—in spreading the word about a public petition calling on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ban dyes and, in the meantime, to require a warning label on dye-containing foods and beverages.  In addition, we are asking FDA to correct misleading statements about the safety of dyes on its website and in its materials.  Moreover, the agency should require appropriate behavioral and other tests prior to any future approval of the use of dyes. 

With industry fighting to keep using dyes, public pressure on the FDA and companies that use dyes is the only way to win this fight.  We hope you will sign the petition and spread the word far and wide.  Please join the campaign, contribute your own experiences, and help us to ensure that the rules governing food protect all children from harm.  Banning dyes is an achievable step that will improve the safety of the food supply.
We, the undersigned citizens, strongly urge the Food and Drug Administration to ban synthetic dyes from food and beverages given the substantial evidence that the dyes harm susceptible children.  

The first priority of any food system should be to protect children.  A large body of studies—and an emerging scientific consensus—demonstrate that some children experience episodes of inattention, hyperactivity, and other behavioral effects following exposure to synthetic dyes.  Yet the FDA has failed to act. 

FDA should immediately withdraw approval for the use of dyes.  Pending such a decision, it should require warning labels on dyed foods that clearly inform families and children that dyes can trigger negative behaviors in children.  FDA should also correct misleading information on its website and materials that currently indicate dyes are “safe.” 

In addition, before allowing future approvals for the use of dyes, FDA should require appropriately sensitive tests.

Dyes serve no nutritional or other essential purpose in food.  All children deserve every chance to grow, thrive, and learn, and dyes, which are ubiquitous in foods marketed to children, are an impediment to their success.

We urge FDA’s timely response and efforts to end the needless suffering of children and families from the use of synthetic dyes in food.   


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