Letters from the FDA to the Dr. Oz Show Regarding Apple Juice and Arsenic
The Food and Drug Administration has monitored fruit juices, including apple juice, for elevated levels of arsenic for several years as part of its annual Total Diet Study and its toxic elements in foods program. When the Dr. Oz Show gave the FDA information suggesting that apple juice samples it had tested showed results as high as 36 parts per billion (ppb) of total arsenic, the FDA obtained its own samples of apple juice—including a sample of the same lot of apple juice purportedly containing 36 ppb—for analysis. The FDA’s test results do not support the findings of the Dr. Oz Show, and, in fact, are significantly less (2 to 6 ppb) than the levels found by the television program’s analysis. Moreover, the vast majority of apple juice samples tested by the FDA over that past 20 years show that apple juice typically contains less than 10 ppb total arsenic. The FDA is committed to protecting the nation’s public health through programs such as its toxic elements in food monitoring efforts and by providing consumers with scientifically credible information.
Here are the two letters the FDA sent to the producers of the Dr. Oz Show that present the results of our findings, explain the limitations of the testing done by the lab used by the Dr. Oz Show, and state that it would be irresponsible and misleading to suggest that apple juice contains unsafe amounts of arsenic based on tests for total arsenic.