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Dioxin: Dioxin in the Food Supply
Table of Contents
Background and Overview
Releases to the Atmosphere
Dioxin in the Environment
Dioxin in the Food Supply
Health Effects
Regulations & Policies
Dioxin Prevention
Assistance Activities
Where To Go for Help
Complete List of Links

Essential Links:

Estimating Exposure to Dioxin-Like Compounds Volume I: Executive Summary
Contains sections on properties, sources, environmental levels, and background sources of dioxin; si...

Groundbreaking Test Finds Dioxins in Food
Contains article showing food contamination results.


About 95% of human exposure to dioxin is through the food supply. Dioxin travels through the atmosphere and eventually settles on soils, sediments, or in the water. The dioxin is then ingested by grazing animals or quickly absorbed by fish. Since dioxin is a highly stable, fat-loving compound, it is stored in animal fat and milk for extended periods of time. Dioxin's half-life ranges significantly depending on where it is stored. Dioxin is persistent for 7-12 years in humans, 10 years in soil, and several months in beef cattle. Once stored inside an animal, the dioxin can bioaccumulate up the food chain. Humans mainly ingest dioxin through the fat of meats, skin of chicken and fish, dairy products, eggs, and milk.
  • 97.5% of dioxin in our food supply is contained in meat (mainly in the fat and skin) and dairy products.
  • Fish dioxin levels are 100,000 times that of the surrounding environment.
  • According to the World Health Organization, the tolerable daily intake (TDI) of dioxin is in the range of 1 to 4 picograms per kilogram of body weight per day.

Source: www.epa.gov/ncea/pdfs/dioxin/part1/volume3/chap-4.pdf [PDF]


 

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Northeast Waste Management Officials' Association
Contact email: abray@newmoa.org

Hub Last Updated: 10/8/2013