Nanomaterial Concerns Prompt Dunkin’ to Remove Titanium Dioxide from Powdered Donuts
Responding to a shareholder resolution filed by As You Sow, Dunkin’ Brands
Group Inc. has reportedly agreed to reformulate its white powdered donuts
to avoid the use of titanium dioxide nanoparticles. In return, the shareholder
advocacy group has withdrawn its most recent resolution, which claimed
that “recent research on the ingestion of inorganic nanoparticles has raised
concerns regarding toxicity to humans and the environment.”
According to As You Sow, 18.7 percent of shareholders supported a previous
resolution asking Dunkin’ to identify any products containing nanomaterials.
That resolution followed a 2013 report alleging that food-grade titanium
dioxide can contain particles less than 100 nanometers “in at least one
“Insufficient safety information exists regarding these manufactured particles,
especially for use in foods; preliminary studies show that nanomaterials can
cause DNA and chromosomal damage, organ damage, inflammation, brain
damage, and genital malformations, among other harms,” claims a March 5,
2015, As You Sow press release.