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NIOSH alert: preventing lung disease in workers who use or make flavorings.

Kanwal R; Kullman G; Kreiss K; Castellan R; Burkhart J; Hilsbos K; Akpinar-Elci M; Piacitelli C; Boylstein R
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 2004-110, 2003 Dec; :1-15
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) requests assistance in preventing lung disease and other health effects in workers who use or make flavorings. The occurrence of severe lung disease in workers who make flavorings or use them to produce microwave popcorn has revealed an unrecognized occupational health risk. Flavorings are often complex mixtures of many chemicals [Conning 2000]. The safety of these chemicals is usually established for humans consuming small amounts in food [Pollitt 2000], not for food industry workers inhaling them. Production workers employed by flavoring manufacturers (or those who use flavorings in the production process) often handle a large number of chemicals, many of which can be highly irritating to breathe in high concentrations. This Alert describes health effects that may occur because of workplace exposure to some flavorings or their ingredients, gives examples of workplace settings in which illness has occurred, and recommends steps that companies and workers should take to prevent hazardous exposures.
Pulmonary-system-disorders; Respiratory-system-disorders; Lung-disease; Lung-disorders; Food-additives; Food-processing-industry; Food-processing-workers; Foodstuff; Airway-obstruction; Pulmonary-function-tests; Spirometry; Ventilation; Quality-control; Organic-compounds; Microwave-radiation; Etiology; Workers; Inhalation-studies; Respiratory-irritants; Work-environment; Gas-chromatography; Job-analysis; Exposure-levels; Industrial-hygiene; Organic-compounds; Chest-X-rays; Airway-resistance; Age-groups; Smoking; Air-sampling; Air-quality-monitoring; Chronic-exposure; Pulmonary-function; Pulmonary-disorders; Respirable-dust; Food-processing
Director, Division of Respiratory Disease Studies, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 1095 Willowdale Road, Suite 2900, Morgantown, WV 26505
Publication Date
Document Type
Alert; Numbered Publication
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 2004-110
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Research Tools and Approaches: Exposure Assessment Methods
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 3, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division