What is hydrolised vegetable protein (HVP)? – the MSG link
Health concerns over food additive 621 MSG are common among today’s consumers. Avoiding MSG typically involves avoiding additives in the range 620-637 but there are ways MSG creeps into our foods without falling into this numerical range.
Hydrolised vegetable protein (HVP) is one such example. It is a concentrated form of natural MSG, made by cooking down glutamate high vegetables with sulphuric acid to create a brown sludge which is then dried and formed into a powder.
Shown on the label as HVP, unless you are aware of this additive’s origins, it is easy to consider a product MSG-free because no additives in the range 620-637 are shown.
Manufacturers may also legally advertise a product as MSG free, even if it contains HVP so it pays to be aware. The health concerns of MSG and HVP are the same so try not to accept MSG-free advertising on a label as gospel and do a little further reading before being truly satisfied of such a claim.
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Lindy Schneider is a writer and researcher with a keen interest in health, wellbeing and natural childcare. She is an advocator of a chemical-free lifestyle in the best interests of her family, the community and a sustainable world. She lives in the Yarra Valley with her partner and two young children.