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Shops sold cancer link apple juice

Apple juice containing high levels of a chemical which can cause cancer and birth defects has been on sale in Britain, the Ministry of Agriculture confirmed last night.

It did not ban products or issue warnings because tests carried out last March revealing levels up to eight times the safe limit could have been 'freak results', a spokeswoman said.

The failure to tell the public was condemned by the Consumers' Association. The Ministry had approached the industry, which had introduced measures to reduce the presence of the chemical, patulin, the spokeswoman said.