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Can a consumer boil peanuts in galvanized washtubs?

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Galvanized means iron or steel coated with zinc, a heavy metal that may be leached from galvanized containers into foods that are high in water content. The risk of leaching increases with increased acidity of foods that come into contact with the galvanized container. Peanuts are a low-acid food, so the risk for leaching is less that if you were preparing lemonade or tomato sauce in the container. Also, if he wants to sell the peanuts, he needs to contact the NC Department of Agriculture Food and Drug Protection Division to determine if galvanized metal is allowed as a food-contact surface. The phone number for the NC Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is 919-733-7125.

PREPARED BY: Angela M. Fraser, Ph.D., Associate Professor/Food Safety Specialist, NC State University in July 2004

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