Sulphur Dioxide – A Healthy Dose!

This morning whilst shopping in Asda I spotted a pack of Mini Chilli Beef Rolls in the bakery section, I thought they sound yummy.

Asda's Chilli Beef Rolls

Upon arriving home I put away my shopping and took a couple of the chilli beef rolls out of the packet and started munching.  They did indeed taste yummy, although there was a little bit too much pastry for my taste.  As I sat munching away I picked up the packaging and started to read the ingredients:

  • 18% BeefSulphur dioxide in food
  • Natural Colour
  • Gluten
  • Milk
  • Wheat
  • Egg
  • Soya
  • Sulphur Dioxide

Eh! Sulphur Dioxide, that doesn’t sound so yummy or healthy what on earth is i and why is it in my chilli rolls?

I immediately went and Googled “Sulphur Dioxide in food” and the results were somewhat shocking as according to the Food Standard Agency.

Different types of additive



Sulphur dioxide (E220) and other sulphites (E221, E222, E223, E224, E226, E227 and E228) are used as preservatives in a wide range of foods, in particular soft drinks, sausages, burgers, and dried fruit and vegetables.

Sulphur dioxide is produced naturally when wine and beer are made and it is often added to wine to stop it from continuing to ferment in the bottle. Usually, most of the ‘head space’ in a bottle of wine (the part of the bottle not filled with wine) is sulphur dioxide.

Anyone who has asthma may react to inhaling sulphur dioxide. A very few people with asthma have had an attack after drinking acidic drinks containing sulphites, but this is not thought to be very common.

Food labelling rules require pre-packed food sold in the UK, and the rest of the European Union, to show clearly on the label if it contains sulphur dioxide or sulphites at levels above 10mg per kg or per litre (or if one of its ingredients contains it). Bear in mind that there could still be foods on the shelves that were produced before this law was introduced (November 2005).

After reading all of the above my chilli beef rolls don’t sound so yummy or even healthy, if the sulphur dioxide was included as a preservative why does it state on the packaging “Eat on day of purchase”.

Way to go Asda you have completely ruined what was meant to be my yummy Sunday moment.



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Elva
    Nov 08, 2010 @ 01:41:34

    I am usually pretty good about reading labels and if there is something that sounds questionable I will not get it. But I slack when it comes to reading things that come from the bakery, maybe I should take the time to read these too.


  2. Marilyn (A Lot of Loves)
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 07:00:51

    Any time I read the ingredient list on something (including beauty products) I’m almost always turned off. Ick.


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