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Aluminum foil should not be used to cover moist, acidic or salty foods on serving plates. This is because the foils can dissolve and aluminum components can be given off to fish, tomatoes, rhubarb or pickled cucumbers, for example. This note can be found on the products, but some manufacturers put it into perspective with the addition: "However, aluminum components are not harmful to health".
This trivializing statement is not permitted according to a decision of the Working Group of Food Chemistry Experts of the Lands (ALS) and the Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL). Because health risks of an excessive aluminum intake cannot be excluded. The discussion primarily focuses on effects on the nervous system, fertility and bone development.
The European Food Safety Authority has derived a tolerable weekly intake of 1 milligrams of aluminum per kg of body weight for oral intake through food.
Consumer advocates demand that manufacturers label their packaging correctly and that legislators create clear rules. A note for safe and proper use in accordance with the EU Consumer Goods Ordinance could read, for example: “Do not bring aluminum foil into contact with moist, acidic or salty foods. Films can dissolve as a result of local element formation. In addition, the safety instructions should be clearly visible to customers when shopping, says the Consumer Center Hesse. It remains to be seen whether “local element formation” contributes to consumer education.
Harald Seitz from aid infodienst e. V. sees the intended use in the foreground: “Each packaging material has specific advantages and disadvantages” and gives the tip “Baked goods, cooked dishes or chocolate retain their aroma and moisture in aluminum packages. But there are enough alternatives for other foods. ”
Aluminum is soluble under the influence of acid or salt. For this reason, aluminum packaging and containers for food such as beverage cans or yogurt cup lids are coated on the inside. (Heike Kreutz, aid)