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NewsBites October 2013 Issue

Imported Salsas High in Lead

There may be more than a fiery kick in that imported salsa. University of Nevada-Las Vegas researchers report that 4 of 25 bottles of salsa and hot sauce they tested exceeded safety standards for lead. The products were made in Mexico and South America and purchased at US supermarkets and ethnic-food stores. Those exceeding safety standards were: El Pato Salsa Picante (manufactured by Walker Foods), Salsa Picante de Chile Habanero (El Yucateco), Bufalo Salsa Clasica (Herdez) and Salsa Habanero (Salsas Castillo). Scientists had stumbled across the potential problem after previous testing found high lead levels in some imported candies, which often use the same chiles and salt found in salsa and hot sauce. Washing the chiles and using sea salt instead of salt from mines known to be high in lead can minimize lead levels, researchers said.

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