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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Database of Select Committee on GRAS Substances (SCOGS) Reviews

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Zinc acetate

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Report No.:  21
Type of Conclusion:  2
ID Code:  557-34-6
Year:  1973
CFR Section:  There is no CFR citation.
SCOGS Opinion:  The available information indicates that a wide margin exists between present intake levels of zinc salts and those that have been reported to produce noticeably harmful effects. Similarly, the suggestion that zinc chloride is carcinogenic has not been supported in carefully controlled animal studies. However, because of the central role of zinc as either an activator of certain enzymes or as a coenzyme in many metabolic reactions, it has been demonstrated that relatively large excesses of zinc salts in the diet can lead to metabolic dysfunctions. In particular, the interaction of zinc with several other mineral nutrients, notably iron, copper, and calcium, suggests that major modification of this nutritional balance might lead to significant metabolic disturbances. In consideration of this and the currently wide nutritional use of zinc sulfate and zinc oxide in infant formulas, it would be desirable, in due course, to expand our knowledge of the interaction of zinc salts in association with dietary levels of other essential mineral nutrients. It would also be desirable to establish maximum limits for the levels of zinc salts in foods, particularly in formulas for infants, since this segment of the population may now consume the highest level of zinc salts when calculated on a daily or body weight basis. In view of the foregoing, the Select Committee concludes that: There is no evidence in the available information on zinc sulfate, zinc oxide, zinc acetate, zinc carbonate, and zinc chloride that demonstrates, or suggests reasonable grounds to suspect, a hazard to the public.