The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) panel on food contact materials, enzymes, flavorings and processing aids has concluded that exposure to Bisphenol A (BPA)—commonly used with other chemicals to make plastics and resins—presents no health concern at estimated levels dietary exposure.
“Based on a comprehensive reevaluation of BPA exposure and toxicity, EFSA’s scientific experts concluded that BPA poses no health risk to consumers of any age group (including unborn children, infants and adolescents) at current exposure levels,” says Steven Hentges of the American Chemistry Council’s (ACC) Polycarbonate/BPA Global Group.
However, the panel’s report, which was released last week, notes there is considerable uncertainty regarding the safety of BPA when it stems from non-dietary sources.
The North American Metal Packaging Alliance, Inc. (NAMPA) welcomed the announcement from EFSA.
“Today’s announcement by EFSA provides still more substantiation that the current uses of BPA in food packaging are safe,” says John Rost, NAMPA chair. “Given that Europe is the birthplace of the Precautionary Principle, this announcement takes on even more prominence, as Europe’s leading food safety body reassures consumers that BPA exposure from foods is not a health concern.”
EFSA consulted with numerous government agencies and stakeholders throughout the world, and conducted a public consultation period to ensure full transparency in the reevaluation process.
The EFSA conclusion is similar to that made by FDA, which issued a new assessment of BPA in December 2014, reaffirming its position that the chemical is safe at the current levels of exposure from food contact uses.
FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) released its 2014 hazard assessment of BPA via the agency’s website following completion of a formal internal agency review of the most current research on BPA. In the recent study’s conclusion, FDA reconfirmed the previously identified “no observed adverse effect level” (NOAEL) of 5mg/kg bw/day.
FDA states the potential for contamination in BPA research activities is much greater than previously realized, and this potential for contamination may explain inconsistent results seen in previous low-dose studies showing adverse effects.