Contaminants are substances that have not been intentionally added to food. These substances may be
present in food as a result of the various stages of its production, packaging, transport or holding.
They also might result from environmental contamination. Since contamination generally has a negative impact
on the quality of food and may imply a risk to human health, the EU has taken measures to minimise
contaminants in foodstuffs.
Community measures have been taken for the following contaminants: mycotoxins (aflatoxins, ochratoxin A,
fusarium-toxins, patulin) , metals (cadmium, lead, mercury ,inorganic tin) , dioxins and PCBs, polycyclic aromatic
hydrocarbons (PAH) , 3-MCPD and nitrates) .