Salt fluoridation is scientific fraud; it affects hundreds of millions of people in Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean and the Middle East; and it is a health disaster. Removing fluoride from salt will benefit everyone, and save the salt companies a lot of trouble.   

A Briefing on Fluoridated Salt

How much fluoride?

Fluoridated salt contains 250 parts per million fluoride. It is in the form of either potassium fluoride or sodium fluoride, both artificial chemicals and extremely toxic. Before dentists and doctors got the idea of promoting fluoride, sodium fluoride was widely used as rat poison or insecticide.

If you consume 10 g of fluoridated salt (typical daily amount for a European adult), you ingest 2.5 mg of fluoride. If you are sensitive to fluoride, that will have immediate health effects, though most doctors would not recognize fluoride poisoning or sensitivity. Anyone consuming that much fluoride every day will eventually suffer serious health damage -- to the thyroid gland, bones, joints, and so on.

See the latest scientific information -- the major report by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, March 2006.

Keep in mind that fluoride is not a nutrient of any sort; it is not an essential trace element and it has no positive role in human metabolism. The simple fact is that fluoride is a very dangerous poison, like lead, mercury or radon gas.

Sources of Information

See the website of Parents of Fluoride Poisoned Children (PFPC).

In particular:


Also: www.fluoride-history.de/salt.htm

The Marthaler paper shows what we're dealing with and is very informative, as well as being outrageous. Prof Dr Thomas Marthaler (dentist professor in Zurich) has been the key figure behind salt fluoridation for many years.

Marthaler and Ireland's doyen of fluoridation Denis O'Mullane were among the authors of the 1994 WHO monograph: "Fluorides and oral health" WHO Technical Report Series No. 846. World Health Organization, Geneva.

They and a few others (Petersen, Lennon, Whelton & Ekstrand) hold a firm grip on anything the WHO does in relation to fluoride. All of them are dentists, and none of them (except Ekstrand) are fluoride experts.

The Heidelberg dental researcher Prof Andreas Schulte presented the following paper in September 2005 in a Swiss dental journal:

Schweiz Monatsschr Zahnmed. 2005;115(8):659-62. Salt fluoridation in Germany since 1991. Schulte AG. Department of Conservative Dentistry, University of Heidelberg, Germany. andreas_schulte@med.uni-heidelberg.de

"Since 1991, fluoridated salt has been on sale in household-size packages in Germany. Potassium or sodium fluoride is added to iodized salt until the fluoride concentration reaches 250 mg/kg. The use of fluoridated salt to prevent caries is officially recommended by the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Zahn-, Mund- und Kieferheilkunde (DGZMK) and several other associations and groups interested in public health. In the course of the past thirteen years, the market share of fluoridated and iodized domestic salt rose to 63.1% in Germany. However, this positive development must not obscure the fact that fluoridated and iodized salt is still not allowed to be used in restaurant or cafeteria kitchens. This restriction now needs to be revoked in view of the fact that many children, adolescents and adults take their main meals in cafeterias or restaurants. Scientific studies have demonstrated beyond doubt that using fluoridated and iodized salt in cafeteria kitchens poses no problem whatever."

I wrote to Schulte about his paper but he didn't reply. It's remarkable that they got special permission to use fluoridated salt in Heidelberg medical school's cafeteria for three years! And when you think that that was George Waldbott's alma mater... (Waldbott was one of the great medical researchers of the 20th century and wrote important books and papers about fluoride.)

Note the final two sentences of the abstract -- lobbying to remove the last vestiges of consumer choice.

The "Health" Authorities

The WHO's baleful influence is everywhere. Since fluoridation started in America more than 60 years ago (read "The Fluoride Deception" by Christopher Bryson), public health doctors have been spreading the lie that "kids need fluoride". That lie has now become "everyone needs fluoride" in the German-speaking countries.

There is a current controversy about whether pregnant women should limit their salt consumption, but the issue of fluoride's effect in pregnancy should be a priority. We know that some fluoride crosses the placental barrier. On the other hand, we know that breast milk contains between 5 and 10 parts per billion fluoride -- a negligible amount. We should respect the fact that mother nature protects babies from fluoride

The recent NRC report (National Academy of Sciences, Washington, March 2006) gives detailed figures about the levels of fluoride ingestion that are hazardous. The report asserts that people consuming water containing fluoride at 4 mg/l will suffer serious health damage sooner or later.

It is absolutely plain that people consuming fluoridated salt (perhaps half the people of Europe) are getting dangerous amounts of fluoride. The average European eats about 10 grams of salt per day. (The EUSalt website says 8 g per day, and I have seen higher figures quoted.) If the salt is fluoridated that's 2.5 mg fluoride ingested per day -- from salt alone. People, especially children, are exposed to many more sources of fluoride every day -- F tablets, toothpaste, dental products, tea, seafoods, F mouthrinse programmes, most prescription drugs, some mineral waters (especially Vichy!), air pollution, teflon, etc. etc.

It is unfortunate that, until recently, many anti-fluoridation campaigners (including myself) tended to think of continental Europe as "unfluoridated". The fact is that almost every European child is being dosed with harmful amounts of fluoride.

The most important point is that fluoride is not a nutrient of any kind; it is a deadly poison. All the propaganda from the WHO and all the medical textbooks that say fluoride is "essential" for kids... they're all just wrong. There is no medical, scientific, legal or moral justification for fluoridating salt (or anything else for that matter).

I surveyed European medical textbooks about pediatrics or nutrition. Almost every one of them asserts that fluoride is "essential" or "important" for children. Ingested fluoride! And they usually call fluoride a "nutrient" or "trace element" (clearly meaning "essential trace element"). Central to that problem is the WHO, which is why I did a critique of the WHO and its dentist "experts": http://tinyurl.com/b4bez


English-speaking countries generally have water fluoridation. German-speaking countries have salt fluoridation. Spanish-speaking countries generally have a mixture of water and salt fluoridation. Salt fluoridation has become widespread in Latin America and the Carribean, and more recently in the Middle East (Lebanon, Syria).

We should be wary of describing certain European countries (Nordic countries, Italy, Portugal...) as "unfluoridated". See:

Prevalence of fluorosis in Norway
Use of fluoride tablets in Norway
Italian dental researchers calling for water fluoridation

At present, more than 63% of salt consumed in Germany is fluoridated. The figure for Switzerland is probably higher, with some cantons implementing 100% salt fluoridation. Fluoridated salt is widespread in Austria, France, Spain, Hungary, Czech Republic and probably many other parts of Europe. With fluoridated salt, there is usually no real consumer choice. Most of the supermarkets in Germany (Aldi, Lidl, PennyMarkt, Norma, for example) stock only fluoridated salt.

In many countries outside Europe the situation is even worse: some governments have ordered that all salt be fluoridated. These include Colombia, Costa Rica and Jamaica. In 1994 the Pan American Health Organization launched a massive program to “fluoridate the entire Region of the Americas”. This project was funded by a multi-year-deal grant from the Kellogg Foundation. (PAHO, 1996)

Consumers of fluoridated salt (at 250 ppm fluoride) typically ingest more fluoride than consumers of fluoridated water. Fluoridated salt is the most blatant scientific fraud.

In Germany, all fluoridated salt also has iodine added. In German maternity hospitals, mothers are offered fluoride tablets for their babies. Many accept. That's how bad things are. Ignorance reigns.

We have reports of fluoridated salt being on sale in Lidl supermarkets in Britain and Ireland. In Ireland (with mandatory water fluoridation) it is certainly illegal. The difficulty if not impossibility of controlling the distribution of fluoridated salt is further evidence of the lunacy of adding fluoride to anything.

Last year, an Irish public health specialist stated that the Republic of Ireland was borderline iodine-deficient, which is amazing for a maritime nation. It seems to be something that has happened since fluoridation began. Consider "the fluoride-iodine antagonism" as described by PFPC (http://bruha.com/pfpc/html/thyroid_history.html).

Marthaler and the key people

It is essentially because of the lies of dentist academics Marthaler (fluoride salt champion from University of Zürich), Lennon, O'Mullane, Whelton and Ekstrand, coordinated by John Fawell MBE and Poul Erik Petersen, and rubber-stamped by the WHO, that pediatricians throughout Europe are telling parents that their children "MUST get fluoride". Most authoritative medical textbooks in Europe refer to fluoride as "essential" or "important". Thus, through fluoridated water, salt, tablets, toothpaste, milk, mouthrinse, varnish, or whatever, almost every European child is dosed with harmful amounts of fluoride. It is a health catastrophe.

Marthaler doesn't just believe in forging links with the fluoridated salt industry (see www.kariesvorbeugung.de/Intern.htm); like his old friend O'Mullane, he forges links with the sugar lobby. See the "industry members" of Marthaler's Toothfriendly International foundation: www.toothfriendly-foundation.org/index.php?id=82

Other prominent dentists collaborating with Marthaler in promoting salt fluoridation include the abovementioned Andreas Schulte in Heidelberg, and Prof Stefan Zimmer in Düsseldorf (see, for example, www.presstext.de/cms/index/opm/1459.html). For his work on caries prevention, Zimmer was recently awarded a prestigious prize for preventive medicine! (See: www.aerzteversicherung.de/servlet/PB/menu/1095682_l1/index.html) The judges of this prize obviously don't know or don't care how toxic fluoride is.

In a 2003 paper (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=15643748&dopt=Abstract), Zimmer refers to "the increasing evidence that the effect of fluoride is mainly the result of chemical reactions on the tooth surface." Nevertheless he goes on to assert that "fluoridated water and fluoridated salt are still important. Although they have a systemic effect, the efficacy of these fluoride applications results from local processes."

And Marthaler asserts: "Fluoridated salt is an important measure against caries -- very safe and without side effects." (www.presstext.de/cms/index/opm/1720.html) Which echoes what his old friend O'Mullane, speaking about fluoride, or fluoridation, declared to Ireland's most influential newspaper: "It harms nobody and it does a lot of good." -- Irish Times, 16 Aug 1999. As if we don't know the effects of ingesting fluoride, a deadly cumulative poison.

And all because of tooth decay. Which is caused by sugar, and sugar alone. As the fluoridators themselves admit...

"In the absence of those sugars [such as sucrose] in foods and drinks dental caries will not be a public health problem." -- M A Lennon, H Whelton, D O’Mullane, J Ekstrand, September 2004, www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/nutfluoride/en/

"Tooth decay is caused by sugar in the diet; there is no question about that."

-- Professor Liz Kay, British Dental Association (Britain's leading pro-fluoridation dentist; see www.den.man.ac.uk/cag/Staff%20Pages/Elizabeth%20Kay.htm) -- London Assembly, Health Committee Appendix A, 9 September 2003 (was at: www.london.gov.uk/assembly/health/2003/healthsep09/minutes/healthsep09minsappa.pdf)

Such statements, though obviously true, are rare. All of the key people behind water and salt fluoridation are extraordinarily reluctant to make any reference to "the elephant in the room" -- the cause of caries.

Why is nobody calling for fluoride to be added to sugar?


The Belgium-based Solvay corporation (35000 employees) is one of the world's leading producers of fluoride chemicals and fluorinated pharmaceuticals. Solvay, through its joint-venture company Esco (www.esco-salt.com/index.cfm), "Europe’s leading salt provider", produces fluoridated table salt. "Solvay is ... offering a wide range of products : [including] to consumers, notably for dietetic contribution (iodised and fluoridated table salt, magnesium derivatives, precipitated calcium carbonate, ...)"


"For several years now, a large proportion of the table salt in household packagings has been supplemented with trace elements such as IODINE or FLUORIDE. In the meantime, almost 70% of salt packets produced in Germany are sold as iodised salt or iodised salt with fluoride." (www.esco-salt.com/produkte/speisesalz-lieferprogramm-privat_en.cfm)

All of the fluoridated salt producers MUST KNOW how toxic fluoride is. All of them MUST KNOW that fluoride is not a nutrient. All of them can choose to leave the salt unfluoridated. They are supposed to be supplying a pure, healthy product, but they are contaminating it with a deadly poison! They have no scientific evidence that fluoridated salt is safe; there is no such evidence.

Companies producing fluoridated salt have no credibility on health issues. (Of course, if they really believed in fluoride they would be lobbying the authorities to make the sugar companies put fluoride in sugar!)

About five years ago, Solvay set up GreenFacts.org, a sham "environmental information" website. Solvay have an enormous vested interest in giving fluoride a benign image. One of the first things on the website was the section on fluoride (www.greenfacts.org/fluoride/about-fluoride.htm). Unsurprisingly, the information is presented so that fluoride is shown in a good light. GreenFacts' claim that it is "an independent non-advocacy non-profit organization" is a deception.

Solvay employed the British "independent" environmental consultant John Fawell MBE (www.johnfawell.co.uk) to put together the Fluoride section of the GreenFacts website. At the same time, Fawell was "coordinating" the WHO's revision of its Drinking Water Guidelines, in which task he collaborated with the fluoride-promoting dentists O'Mullane, Whelton and Lennon (all non-experts in relation to fluoride). A prime example of that collaboration is the major WHO report "Nutrients in Drinking Water" (www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/nutrientsindw/en/index.html) in which a whole chapter is, unconscionably, devoted to fluoride, even though fluoride is not a nutrient of any sort. Not surprisingly, the WHO's Drinking Water Guidelines have figures on fluoride that are all wrong; they do not protect public health, they protect the policy of water fluoridation!

Fawell is now the European principal for The Sapphire Group (www.thesapphiregroup.com/), risk management consultants working for big industrial corporations -- chemical, pharmaceutical, armaments, etc. According to the Sapphire website, "The Sapphire Group provides consulting services to business clients around the world that manufacture, use, transport, and dispose of chemicals... Our goal is to help clients realize market maximization of their products by applying the philosophy of environmental agility in the development, production, and marketing of responsible products."

Not unrelated to GreenFacts is www.eurofluor.org, the website of the main European fluoride producers, including Solvay. There, the lies about fluoride are more blatant: for example, their statement that "there is no doubt that controlled levels of ingested fluoride are many times more effective [against caries] than any topical application." (See page under Applications/ Consumer Products.)


Salt fluoridation is scientific fraud; it affects hundreds of millions of people in Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean and the Middle East; and it is a health disaster. Removing fluoride from salt will benefit everyone, and save the salt companies a lot of trouble.

-- Joe Thornton

May 2006