Cupcake lovers are being warned to make sure their sweet treats don’t damage their health.

Trading standards officers in Brighton and Hove have received reports of cupcakes containing plastic being sold in the city.

Some glitter and decorations on the popular treats are made of the same material that makes plastic drink bottles.

Brighton and Hove City Council said its staff had received reports of cupcakes containing plastic but were not currently investigating any specific cases.

The local authority has contacted city businesses to warn them of the rules on the use of glitter.

For years cake glitter has been sold in pots labelled as either edible or non-toxic.

Edible glitter is made from starch-based food products that the body can digest, whereas non-toxic glitter is manufactured from plastic that the body cannot break down.

Glitter issues

In April the Food Standards Agency issued fresh guidance saying that non-toxic glitter could not be described as edible and should not be used on cakes other than those on display.

All non-toxic glitters must now be clearly labelled that they should not be consumed.

A Brighton and Hove City Council spokesman said: “Celebration cakes and cupcakes for all occasions are increasingly popular and edible glitter has been become a fashionable choice of decoration.

“Anyone seeking to use edible glitter is advised to check the labels carefully to ensure the powder is suitable to be eaten.

"Edible glitters are sugar-based and should have a best before date. Non-edible glitters are often made from plastic and may be described as non-toxic.

"While they are not likely to be dangerous in small amounts, it is not advisable to eat anything not produced to food standards.”

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