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At the end of last year it was announced that the meat industry had invested £13.5 million in an attempt to create healthier bacon.
According to The World Health Organisation [WHO], processed meats like bacon are as dangerous as asbestos and smoking in terms of being a carcinogen. The organization estimates that 34,000 bowel and colon cancer deaths annually can be linked directly to diets high in processed meat.
It is the nitrates – which are used to cure bacon – that make it so unhealthy.
The new product – called Naked Bacon – is said to be nitrate free.
It has been created by British meat manufacturers Finnebrogue working with Spanish chemists.
Professor Chris Elliott, Chair of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s University Belfast, said: “Many forms of processed foods have come under the spotlight over recent years for their unhealthy attributes. Processed red meat in particular has been a focal point.
“Nitro containing compounds, used in the manufacture of traditional bacons, are known to cause the formation of chemicals that have negative health impacts.
“To have a bacon produced naturally, that doesn’t require such chemicals to be added or formed during processing, is a very welcome development.”
The bacon is the first to be completely free from nitrites, preservatives, E numbers, and all allergens.”
But does simply removing the nitrates out of bacon make it healthy?
In this video, PBN’s Klaus Mitchell looks at the whole story.
He says: “The narrative many people are pushing is that this nitrate-free bacon is healthier and safer.
“Sure – nitrates are unhealthy – and that particular risk has been eliminated – but does being nitrate-free equate to being healthy?”