Is this hazelnut spread worse for us than we thought? Read on…

Nutella nutters, relax – Dubai officials have quashed rumours suggesting the beloved breakfast spread poses a cancer risk.

A number of media reports over the last week have quoted a study released by the European Food Safety Authority last year, which said palm oil, one of the main ingredients in Nutella, could be a possible carcinogen.

Ferrero, the Italian company which makes Nutella, has denied the claims, and Dubai Municipality has now responded to the controversy, saying it is “not proven” that Nutella contains carcinogens.

“This product is safe based on the production and the processing bases,” the civic body said in a post to Facebook.

According to Amnesty International, palm oil and palm-based ingredients are found in approximately 50 per cent of supermarket products, including chocolate, biscuits and cereal.

And while it might not give you cancer, it’s not great for the environment. The organisation says the widespread use of the ingredient has led to extensive deforestation, destruction of rainforests, and harm to wildlife species.

As always, everything in moderation (which is hard to do when you’re visiting Eataly’s Nutella Bar in Dubai Mall)…



In June, Dubai Municipality set up a What’sApp number so residents can ask about all sorts of rumours doing the rounds on social media – everything from supposedly carcinogenic food products, to unhygienic restaurants. The municipality promises to respond to the query within eight hours, either validating or debunking the rumour.

So the next time you read something that links your favourite food to cancer, try sending a WhatsApp to +971 50 107 7799.

It’s also not the first time Dubai Municipality has responded to a Nutella-related health scare.

In 2012, the civic body issued a warning after UAE teenagers were found to be selling “Nutella needles” – hypodermic syringes filled with the hazelnut spread.

We think we’ll be sticking with a good old fashioned jar and spoon…

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