Does the safety data sheet for Apeel, a protective coating for produce, contain "a long list of hazardous cautions" that make the product unsafe for human consumption? No, that's not true: The information in the claim comes from a cleaning product using the same name but made by another company. The cleaner and degreaser is not meant for human consumption. The safety data sheet from the cleaner is being used to misrepresent the product used to extend the shelf life of produce.
The claim appeared in an Instagram post and video on April 19, 2023. The description for the post says:
If he's backing it, I won't trust it.
Pro Tip....you can do the same thing storing your produce in mason jars in your fridge. 🤯 Buuuuut that's a natural option they won't profit from.
This is what the post looked like on Instagram at the time of writing:
(Source: Instagram screenshot taken on Wed Apr 26 15:16:40 2023 UTC)
About 18 seconds into the short video clip, the narrator makes her case against the coating that's used to extend the time that treated crops remain fit for consumption. She says:
It goes by the name Apeel and they are going to spray this on your fresh fruits and vegetables. They say that it'll help reduce plastic use and it'll save your fruits and veggies up to three times longer. ...
But I saved the best for last. Their safe and effective new product has a long list of hazardous cautions. Spread the word.
The screenshot of the post above shows a list of hazard and precautionary statements for a product called Apeel. However, this product is not a coating for produce but, rather, an orange cleaner for hard surfaces made by a different company called Evans Vanodine. Here's a screenshot of the product page from their website:
(Source: Evans Vanodine website screenshot taken on Wed Apr 26 18:02:22 2023 UTC)
The page also says:
EVANS APEEL HAS NO RELATION TO APEEL SCIENCES AND SHOULD NOT BE USED TO PRESERVE FRUITS AND VEGETABLES.
The cleaner's safety data sheet is also available on the company's website. It includes the same hazard and precautionary statements as found in the video, plus a few more. The video's claim (red box) and the safety data sheet (blue box) appear side by side below for comparison:
(Source: Instagram and Evans Vanodine website screenshot taken on Wed Apr 26 2023 UTC)
The food-preservation company called Apeel describes its produce coating this way:
Apeel's plant-based protection adds an extra 'peel' to slow the rate of oxidation and moisture loss. It works by sealing moisture in and keeping oxygen out, which maintains the fruit's quality for longer.
Its website also has a page on product safety information, which is much different than that for the cleaner. The product information sheet for Apeel, which is trademarked as Edipeel, says it's safe for people to eat:
Edipeel meets the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements for qualification as Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) in the United States as a surface finishing agent for fresh fruits and vegetables. Edipeel is also allowed for use on all fruits and vegetables in Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Peru, and South Africa, without restriction. Additionally, Edipeel is allowed for use on the following fruits in the European Union, Norway, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom: avocados, citrus fruit, mangoes, papayas, melons, bananas, pineapples, and pomegranates. Edipeel may be allowed for use in additional countries or regions not listed here.