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Restaurants Elevate Air Pollutants

10 years, 2 months ago

2689  0
Posted on Apr 09, 2010, 6 a.m.

Commercial cooking is a surprisingly large source of a range of air pollutants that could pose risks to human health and the environment.

Commercial food cooking is a known source of air pollutants, as smoke is emitted from the cooking process, thereby exposing humans and the environment to a variety of gases and tiny solid particles. University of Minnesota researchers have found that fatty foods cooked with high heat, especially with open flames, such as cooking hamburger patties on a conveyor broiler, are a prime culprit.  Research by one of the teams’ members previously concluded that for every 1,000 pounds of hamburger cooked on conveyor broilers, 25 pounds of emissions are created. Additionally, the use of certain oils also can increase emissions, as the researchers estimate that for 1,000 pounds of chicken cooked in a wok with peanut oil, 45 pounds of emissions are produced.  Noting that “Not only do these emissions affect air quality, but they contain chemicals that are known carcinogens,” the researchers urge that scientists “assess what needs to be replicated in standardized laboratory tests, and to suggest better methods of emission control."

Lisa Wang, Deborah Gross, Thomas Kuehn, Dabrina Dutcher, Bernard Olson. “Chemical composition of cooking aerosols” (Abstract 49). . Presented at the 239th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, March 2010.

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