"Chewing gum contains toxic mineral hydrocarbons and should carry a health warning, warns a consumer watchdog body."
"The Food Commission says people should be advised they are "chewing on danger."
"Chewing gum contains mineral hydrocarbons - better known as paraffin wax or vaseline - which have been banned because of their toxicity from all foods except chewing gum, bubblegum and cheese rind," the commission said in its publication, The Food Magazine.
"In August Food Minister David Maclean told parliament the government urged consumers not to consume chewing gum. He also suggested cutting off the wax rind on cheeses, leaving a 2mm cushion of cheese for safety."
"The caution followed Mr Maclean's decision to allow mineral hydrocarbons to be used in chewing gum and cheese wax, at least until further scientific reports are received in 1992."
"Early in 1989, the government announced its intention to ban petroleum-based oils from most other food uses, such as coating dried fruit."
"Philip Hamilton, managing director of Wrigley, which holds 88 percent of British gum sales, dismissed the Food Commission's claims as 'sensationalist, inaccurate and misleading.'"
(The Johannesburg Star, December 13, 1990, p.20)