It is difficult to think of a food nowadays where there are NO additives. Even table salt (pure sodium chloride) has calcium silicate added to make it flow better. If we include all the potential residues from the treatments in the field and greenhouse, and if we take care to read the labels of all the jars and cans to see what colourings, flavourings and preservatives are added, then we can see that the average consumer has a very different diet to 100 years ago.
Most of these additives have been individually tested in the laboratories to check that they are not toxic, but they have not been checked as an aggregate.
There are even some foods which are composed almost entirely of chemicals and refined food products:-
- Many 'potato crisp' type products are not made directly from potato slices, but from starches which have been extracted from potatoes or corn, then cooked with flavouring and other additives.
- Pot-Noodles similarly use 'agri-chemicals' to make the noodles, with many chemical additives
These seem to be the most extreme examples, however, the example of potato starch is not abnormal.
Food contains many starches, glucose syrups, gums and extracts which are in fact 'industrial products' derived from natural foods. Many vegetable oils are extracted from the plants using chemical solvents.