About Nitrates

About Nitrates

Manufacturers add nitrates and nitrites to foods such as cured sandwich meats, bacon, salami or sausages to give them color and to prolong their shelf life. When added to processed foods in this way, both nitrates and nitrites can form nitrosamines in the body, which can increase your risk of developing cancer.

The major concern is a class of synthetic food preservatives that includes sodium or potassium nitrates and nitrites, which food companies put in cured meat to preserve its color, prevent fats from going rancid and keep bacteria from growing.

These chemicals also contaminate drinking water because of nitrogen-based fertilizers as well as livestock and human waste. This is most dangerous for infants, who can develop a rare but serious condition known as methemoglobinemia, or “blue baby syndrome,” from drinking contaminated water. Nitrates and nitrites may also affect pregnancy outcomes. The EPA has more details about nitrite in drinking water here.

Keep in mind that there’s a difference between the nitrates that are added to foods and those that occur naturally in produce such as spinach and celery. The naturally occurring nitrates in food come with vitamin C and other compounds that inhibit conversion into nitrosamines. There is no data to suggest that naturally occurring nitrates are harmful, so keep on eating those healthful foods.

Gerbs Roasted and/or seasoned lines are Made, Packaged, Processed, and Shipped in our facility in the historic PK Foundry building in Johnston, Rhode Island. We do not use any cooking oils, thus everything is dry roasted at low temperatures to lock in the natural vitamins, minerals, & omega fatty acids, because we feel baking in a pool of oil is just as unhealthy as frying! We maybe a small business located in the smallest state, but we THINK BIG – Gerbs is unique compared to any of our competition, in that we handle all aspects of operation – from purchasing, production, storage, and distribution/shipping on our 100% dedicated packaging equipment by our specially trained and caring staff.

Gerbs is All Natural


  • Non-GMO
  • Chemical Free
  • Preservative Free
  • Nothing Artificial
  • Nitrates/Nitrite Free
  • Trans-Fat Free
  • MSG Free

Recognized Allergens


Our entire product line is FREE from the Top 11 Recognized Allergen’s. We inspect, roast, package, store, and ship all our lines to ensure Gerbs are: Gluten Free, Wheat Free, Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Legume Free (which includes beans, peas, lentils, chick peas, lupine), Soy Free, Egg Free, Sesame Free, Milk/Dairy Free, Fish Free, Crustacean Free, Shellfish Free, and Mustard Free.

Testimonial from Japhy Ryder

I'm special. And by special, I mean I have SEVERAL food allergies. It's always good to find a food manufacturer that is allergen-free. These seeds provide a ton of sustenance and taste wonderful. Highly recommended, particularly if you are special.