The Dutch football association has called for more research into the risks of cancer-causing substances in artificial grass, reports RTL Nieuws.
Professor Martin van den Berg, a toxicology specialist at Utrecht university, has told the television programme Zembla that the grass should not be used until potential risks are clear. ‘As a toxicologist, I say: I wouldn’t play on these fields because we cannot make a proper assessment of the risks,’ he said.
The KNVB football association responded by saying more needs to be done to investigate whether carcinogens in rubber granules made from old car tyres – used to produce the artificial turf – can end up in athletes’ bodies. It commissioned research from Industox in 2006 but this is believed to have been very basic.
Earlier this year the European Commission commissioned an investigation into the effects of using rubber products, including the granules in artificial grass, and results are expected at the end of the year.