Beech-Nut finds high arsenic levels in their baby rice cereal

All rice grown on soil/water that has arsenic in it will contain some and always has. Arsenic is a normal natural element in many soils and groundwaters and rice plants have a tendency to concentrate this in their kernels. This is not pollution!

There is no reason to panic, it is not like rice-eating cultures are known for depopulation. Of course there is also no reason for complacency either. Balance in everything :slight_smile:

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The issue here is totally manmade. Cotton is a very pesticide intensive crop, and in the old days, lots of those pesticides were As based. This resulted in relatively high levels of As in the soils, and rice is very good at uptake of heavy metals (such as As) which then concentrate in the grain, so rice grown in soils previously used for cotton fields tend to have elevated levels of As. You are correct that As is always found in rice, but as has been known for centuries, β€œthe dose makes the poison,” and this elevated level is the concern.

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