In high doses, it has some negative health effects on lab animals, such as precursors to stomach tumors and damage to DNA. A number of studies have shown that prolonged exposure to TBHQ may induce carcinogenity.[
From Diet Studies
" 3-tert-Butyl-4-hydroxyanisole and tert-butyl-hydroquinone (TBHQ) are antioxidants known to promote renal and bladder carcinogenesis [cancer] in the rat, although the mechanisms of these effects are unclear....Because some chemicals may induce carcinogenesis by a mechanism involving cytotoxicity followed by sustained regenerative hyperplasia, our results suggest that the toxicity of GSH conjugates of TBHQ to kidney and bladder may contribute to the promoting effect of 3-tert-butyl-4-hydroxyanisole and TBHQ in these tissues. "
I will never eat this crap again, I wonder if I can return the unused popcorn I have.