Crackers and Biscuits Can Cause Cancer

Jacob Cream Cracker Biscuits Might Cause Cancer

I am absolutely horrified to read that crackers and biscuits can cause cancer! That's right. The biscuits that we Malaysians love to eat a lot are carcinogenic. Familiar household names like Hup Seng, Jacob and even Oreo are said to produce biscuits and crackers that contain cancer-causing "contaminants". So all this while, we have been eating "cancer"?

I do hope that these brands being mentioned such as Hup Seng, Jacob, and Oreo just to name a few could make an official statement regarding this issue. Conducted by Hong Kong's consumer watchdog, their research has uncovered that a lot of biscuits and crackers contain the dreaded substances that will cause us to get terminal diseases. Do read this article which was published in South China Morning Post to find out more.

Crackers and Biscuits Can Cause Cancer

[Start of the original article]

Hong Kong Consumer Council finds cancer-causing substances in all 60 biscuit types subject to testing

Cancer-causing substances were detected in all 60 samples of pre-packaged biscuits and crackers tested by Hong Kong’s consumer watchdog, which also found that 40 percent of the products carried misleading nutrition labels. The Consumer Council also revealed on Monday that most of the analyzed snacks – including crackers, sandwich biscuits and wafers – were high in fat, sugar or salt.

02 Hong Kong Consumer Council finds cancer-causing substances in all 60 biscuit types subject to testing

The watchdog said the full set of samples contained contaminants – glycidol or acrylamide, or both – which emerged during the processing of the biscuits at high temperatures. Animal testing indicates the genotoxic carcinogens may induce cancer, the council says.

“We believe that these kinds of contaminants are possible to avoid because according to our findings some of the ingredients in these biscuits are palm oil ... You can minimize the contaminants as much as possible,” said Gilly Wong Fung-han, CEO of the council. Palm oil refined at high temperatures carries potential carcinogenic risks, according to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

The Joint Food and Agriculture Organisation and World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Committee on Food Additives said it was inappropriate to publish guidance specifying intake limits for genotoxic carcinogens and instead suggested keeping consumption to as low a level as reasonably practicable.

A third contaminant, 3-MCPD, was also found in the samples. EFSA said it was considered safe for most people but excessive consumption on a daily basis could lead to possible long-term adverse effects on the kidneys and male fertility. Three-quarters of the biscuits were detected with all three types of contaminants.

Hup Seng Cream Cracker Biscuits Might Cause Cancer

Consuming eight pieces of the biscuit sample with the highest 3-MCPD level would lead an adult to exceed the tolerable daily intake limit for the contaminant, falling to three for a 5-year-old boy, according to EFSA recommendations. “For consumers, you should eat these biscuits as little as possible or replace them with a healthier choice. If you really need to eat them, be disciplined and controlled,” she said.

Hong Kong Consumer Council finds cancer-causing substances in all 60 biscuit types subject to testing

Can you spot Hup Seng, Jacob, and Oreo on the list?

The council urged manufacturers to review their production formula and called on authorities to impose benchmark levels on top of the existing guidelines for the local industry. The benchmarks should make reference to European standards for food such as fries, crisps, biscuits, and crackers which have a higher risk of containing excessive levels of acrylamide, according to the council.

About 85 percent of the tested samples were also high in fat, sugar or sodium. Thirty-three of the biscuit types reached the “high fat” benchmark, meaning a total fat content of more than 20g per 100g serving. The saturated fatty acid (SFA) found in the samples varied widely, with the highest readings almost 19 times the lowest ones.

A serving of the product containing the most SFA – the Gastone Lago Wafer with Lemon Cream at 23.7g – would account for 29 percent of a person’s recommended daily intake as set by WHO. The Fu Shang Zhi Pin Cheese Soda Cracker (no sucrose) was found in the study to have the highest glycidol levels, while the Muji Shiruko Sandwich Cracker was top for acrylamide.

The watchdog also found that 23 of the products had labels claiming nutrient levels that exceeded their actual value by 20 percent, the maximum tolerance allowed. Three of the 60 samples were exempted from labeling rules.

Hong Kong Consumer Council finds cancer-causing substances in all 60 biscuit types subject to testing

Wong said the misleading labeling was “not very ideal”. “Consumers, especially patients who have chronic illness and diabetes, rely on these nutrition labels to purchase the product,” she said. “Although we understand that the nutrient contents in products could not be 100 percent the same as described, the discrepancy should not exceed the regulation.”

In the most extreme sample, the YBC Levain Classical Cracker was detected with an SFA content 76 times higher than the stated level. The finding has been reported to the Centre for Food Safety. The watchdog suggested consumers considered healthier alternatives when snacking, pointing to fresh fruit, unsalted roasted nuts, seeds and low-sugar soy milk as options. Biscuits are not a substitute for regular meals, the council added.

[The end of the original article]

So what're your thoughts about these terrifying findings by Hong Kong's watchdog? Surely they have presented facts and figures to back up their findings. Now I am really worried if I should be eating crackers or biscuits from Hup Seng, Jacob, or Oreo at all since they have the potential or risk to cause cancer. But I do eat them almost every day. How? Will this change how you are going to enjoy your usual morning crackers or biscuits? 😭

Source: South China Morning Post


  1. I was horrified to read the report too. The list has all my favourite brands and I will relook into the brands now. So many brand in Malaysia were not tested by them. Adoi!

    1. At least the popular ones have been tested...I eat Hup seng, jacob and oreo a worried now...

  2. "...replace them with a healthier choice..." The article did not give any suggestion. Of course, natural is best, anything factory manufactured is not good. Even bread - unless you bake your own...but the flour is factory produced (and other ingredients too). Best not consumed or taken in moderation.

    1. True...almost everything that we buy has been processed to a certain degree...

      Perhaps these biscuits manufacturers should use other methods to produce their crackers etc.

  3. I am not worried because I believe these are propaganda against the palm oil industry. Smoking cigarettes are much worse than eating these crackers but so many people are voluntarily smoking cigarettes and enjoying it. If really is concerned u have to rear own chickens for eggs and grow your own organic vegetables and only eat steamed or boiled food.

    1. I am not smoking...and I certainly don't want my biscuits to be laid with cancer-causing substances...

    2. Then you better not eat outside food because this cancer causing substances are from deep fried vegetables oil which many outside food also got.

      You also need to read up more on Glycidol and Acrylamide which is the cancer causing substances that they found in the biscuits.

      These two items most probably can be found in many deep fried food that we consumed outside our homes.

      Glycidol, also known as 2,3-epoxy-1-propanol, is derived from glycidyl esters (GEs) found in fats and oils. Upon intake of GEs through food consumption, it is broken down into glycidol in human digestion. The GEs contaminants are formed at high temperature (above 200°C) during the refining process of vegetable oils.

      Limit certain cooking methods, such as frying and roasting, and limit the time certain foods are cooked. Boiling and steaming do not produce acrylamide. Soak raw potato slices in water for 15 to 30 minutes before frying or roasting to reduce acrylamide formation during cooking.

    3. Truth to be told...almost everything is processed and that means they are not that healthy....

  4. I saw the article too but after checking out the list, I found that I don't eat any of them. :P

    1. Good for you. I ate...3 of them that I have mentioned.



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Tekkaus | Malaysia Lifestyle Blogger | Influencer: Crackers and Biscuits Can Cause Cancer
Crackers and Biscuits Can Cause Cancer
Crackers and Biscuits Can Cause Cancer. A research found out that Hup Seng and Jacob cream crackers biscuits might cause cancer when eaten.
Tekkaus | Malaysia Lifestyle Blogger | Influencer
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