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FDA sets new limits for arsenic in apple juice

WASHINGTON — After more than a year of public pressure from consumer advocates and concerned parents, the Food and Drug Administration said Friday it will set new limits on the level of arsenic allowed in apple juice, matching those currently permitted in drinking water.

Any apple juice containing more than 10 parts per billion could face removal from the market and its manufacturers could risk legal action, the agency said. FDA officials emphasized that the agency has been monitoring arsenic levels in apple juice for decades, and that the overwhelming number of products on the market already meet such a standard.

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Urvashi Rangan, director of consumer safety and sustainability for Consumers Union, said in a statement Friday that the proposed 10 parts per billion level for apple juice ‘‘is a reasonable first step in protecting consumers from unnecessary exposure to arsenic.”

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