Citric acid is not being used by ‘evil forces’ to harm population

28 September 2021
What was claimed

Citric acid is a poison derived from black mould and is deliberately being used to harm the population.

Our verdict

It is true that manufactured citric acid is made from a type of mould, but it is generally recognised as safe. There is no evidence it is being used in a plot to harm the population.

A post on Facebook claims that citric acid is a poison derived from genetically modified black mould, which is being hidden in food and used in “spiritual warfare” by “evil forces in a direct attempt to lower the population’s vitality and natural vibrational frequency”. 

Citric acid is one of the most common food additives, and is often used in food production to enhance flavour and preserve ingredients, for example, in tomato ketchup, sweets and fizzy drinks. It is also used in cosmetics and cleaning products. As its name suggests, it is naturally found in citrus fruits such as lemons, limes and oranges. 

However, it is expensive to extract directly from fruits and citric acid is used so frequently in food production that demand far outstrips supply. For that reason, it is mostly produced using a specific type of mould called Aspergillus niger, a fungus which causes black mould on the surface of fruits such as grapes and apricots. 

Citric acid has been approved for use in the UK by the Food Standards Agency. The US Food and Drug Administration says citric acid is "generally recognized as safe" in food and skin products.

Drinks and foods containing citric acid can wear away tooth enamel, and some experts studying manufactured citric acid have called for further research into the safety of the additive. 

There is no evidence to suggest that citric acid in food is being used to poison the population.

This article is part of our work fact checking potentially false pictures, videos and stories on Facebook. You can read more about this—and find out how to report Facebook content—here. For the purposes of that scheme, we’ve rated this claim as partly false because it is true that manufactured citric acid is made from a type of mould, but there is zero evidence this is being used to poison the population.

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