Delicious, simple and filling: the French baguette is an essential part of pretty much any meal in France.
The French even have some strange habits to do with their beloved baguette.
But a new report reveals some information that you might want to know about what exactly is inside this staple of the French diet.
It seems baguettes and other kinds of bread sold in France could contain controversial substances such as additives, pesticides and mycotoxins (potentially dangerous substances from the fungus family), according to French consumer magazine 60 Millions de consommateurs.
The magazine tested everything from traditional baguettes to sandwich bread, bread rolls and gluten-free bread covering a total of 65 products sold in artisan bakeries (boulangeries) and supermarkets in France.
And they say “more than half of them” had pesticide residues.
Some of those tested also included hormone-altering substances (known as endocrine disruptors), which may interfere with the body's endocrine system and produce adverse developmental, reproductive, neurological, and immune effects in humans.
However in most cases the quantities of the controversial substances detected met regulatory limits.
Nevertheless, the magazine criticised the high quantity of additives in some of the breads which, despite being allowed, are “suspected of causing side effects when a certain amount is ingested.”
They also said there was too much salt in all of the products tested, and in particular in baguettes, saying that it is “high time” salt levels were regulated.