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Call to FDA: Get the BPA out of Food Packaging

October 22, 2008

Washington, DC – The controversy continues over bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical which is considered toxic, yet is commonly used in plastic and metal containers, including baby bottles and soup cans. The Natural Resources Defense Council(NRDC) is now asking the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to ban the use of BPA in food packaging.

NRDC scientist Dr. Sarah Janssen says long-time animal studies have shown BPA's toxic properties, and now human evidence is emerging.

"BPA has been associated with reproductive abnormalities, prostate and breast cancer, neurological damage, insulin resistance and diabetes, and cardiovascular disease."

BPA was originally developed to mimic female hormones, adds Dr. Janssen.

"It's very interesting that, when it didn't quite make the mark of a 'good-enough' estrogen for a drug application, somehow it got incorporated into polycarbonate plastic."

There is no requirement to list BPAs on packaging labels. The NRDC argues that alternatives are readily available for plastic products, and at least one food company has found a way to reduce exposure from metal can linings.

Approximately 93 percent of the general population already has some BPA in their bodies, according to the NRDC.

Two industry-funded studies being relied upon by the FDA say BPA is safe. However, last week, Canada declared BPA a toxin and ordered it removed from baby bottles.

Mary Kuhlman/Steve Powers, Public News Service - OH