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J Food Prot. 2013 Sep;76(9):1597-607. doi: 10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-13-046.

Dietary estimates of dioxins consumed in U.S. Department of Agriculture-regulated meat and poultry products.

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  • 1Food Safety and Inspection Service, Office of Public Health Science, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC 20250, USA.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) examined whether levels of dioxin-like compounds (DLCs) measured in FSIS-regulated meat and poultry products indicate possible concern for U.S. public health based on usual and recommended consumption patterns of meat and poultry for the U.S. population. The FSIS estimated daily dietary exposures and compared them with the reference dose (RfD) established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for potential noncancer risks from 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), assuming that all measured DLCs were represented by the RfD (i.e., not just TCDD alone). The estimates indicate that a typical U.S. adult daily exposure of DLCs from FSIS-regulated products is below the EPA-established RfD. Only children consuming chronic average daily servings of meat or poultry products containing the highest measured levels of DLCs may exceed the RfD. If one follows the recommendations from the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, all expected exposures to DLCs from FSIS-regulated products are estimated to be well below the RfD.

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