The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) recently issued a letter to
the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to update the agency on its findings
about mycoprotein, a meat-substitute marketed under the brand name
Quorn. Following up on a 2002 campaign, the latest initiative claims that the
RNA-reduced mold Fusarium venenatum used to produce Quorn is not safe,
with consumers reporting reactions such as vomiting and diarrhea, hives, and

“CSPI has now received about 500 reports of adverse reactions from Americans, as well as about 1,200 from the United Kingdom, other European countries, Scandinavia, and Australia,” writes CSPI Executive Director Michael Jacobson. Believing that small-print allergen warnings are not enough in this case, the group has asked FDA to compel Quorn to display “a prominent and candid front-label disclosure” alerting consumers to the alleged side effects. CSPI has also requested a revocation of mycoprotein’s generally recognized as safe (GRAS) status.

“There are plenty of nutritious, safe, and environmentally-friendly meat substitutes, made with soybeans, mushrooms, legumes, rice, and other real food ingredients,” said Jacobson in a December 1, 2011, press release. “It’s crazy to knowingly allow a potent new allergen into the food supply yet that’s exactly what the FDA has done.”

About The Author


For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.

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