FDA: Bead-like silver sprinkles on holiday treats are not edible

(WHDH) – If you are a fan of the bead-like silver sprinkles that tend to make an appearance every holiday season, the Food and Drug Administration says you may want to think twice.

According to the FDA, the sprinkles, which are officially called “silver dragées,” are meant to be used for decorative purposes only and are not intended to be eaten.

The FDA says the beads contain silver, which is an unsafe color additive. As a result, the agency determined that the beads are not actual food items.

But their warning is nothing new: the agency issued their original determination on the beads back in the 70s. That hasn’t stopped most bakers, amateur and professional alike, from using the sprinkles, especially around the holiday season.

According to the Baker’s Kitchen, the dragees have a sugar center which is what gives them their sweet taste, but it’s the metal coating that makes them inedible. While they are safe to use for decorating food, the beads should be removed before consumption.

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