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NewsBites July 2011 Issue

Sweden Eyes BPA Can-Lining Ban

Sweden is poised to become the first in the world to phase out the use of the controversial chemical bisphenol A (BPA) in food and beverage can linings, following a European Union ban on BPA in baby bottles. A report by the Swedish Chemical Agency and the National Food Administration proposes requiring Swedish food packagers and processors to submit plans by year-end for BPA-free alternatives. The report cited concerns over migration of BPA in contact with food, especially over possible effects on fetuses and young children. BPA is a chemical used in the production of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins, including those used to line cans; plastic products made with BPA are included in the “Other” category of recyclables identified by the number 7. Very high doses have been linked to genetic damage, cancer and diabetes in animals. The American Chemistry Council states, however, that “consumers would have to eat more than 500 pounds of food and beverages in contact with polycarbonate plastic or epoxy resins every day of their lives to exceed exposure levels determined to be safe by the European Food Safety Authority and the US Environmental Protection Agency.”

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