EU bans PC baby bottles from 2011 / Health groups delighted, PlasticsEurope “disturbed”
Following the decision of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA, Brussels / Belgium; not quite two months ago not to revise its recommended total daily intake (TDI) of bisphenol A – see of 07.10.2010 – it appeared the EU would not take any immediate action to ban or restrict the feedstock for polycarbonate and epoxy resins. But in an unexpected move, the European Commission on 26 November announced it would ban the controversial chemical in baby bottles from 2011. PlasticsEurope (Brussels / Belgium;, the industry association representing plastics producers, said it was “deeply disturbed” by the action.

The decision to prohibit the manufacture of infant feeding bottles made of polycarbonate from March 2011 and the sale or import of the bottles from June 2011 came after a “qualified majority” of the EU Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health voted to accept the Comission’s proposed directive. EFSA’s “scientific opinion” published in October, which found “no new evidence that would warrant amending” the TDI, is believed to have been controversial in some EU member states. France and Denmark already had adopted national measures to restrict BPA in feeding bottles – see of 18.05.2010 and 09.04.2010.

John Dalli, the EU commissioner for health and consumer policy, called the ban “good news” for European consumers and parents. Following publication of EFSA’s statement that the relevance of recent studies’ findings for human health could not be assessed, Dalli said it “cannot be excluded” that BPA could have negative effects on infants, adding that “this is a new element which will have to be taken into account.” Similar warnings to err on the side of caution had been voiced earlier by national agencies banning BPA in infant products, including Canada, while others such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) adopted a wait-and-see attitude.

While numerous consumer and health organisations, such as Austria’s “Global 2000” and Germany’s “BUND”, welcomed the EU’s move, PlasticsEurope said it is “in direct contradiction to two recently published assessments” by EFSA and the World Health Organisation (WHO). The plans “undermine the systems and processes which ensure the safety of food and food contact products,” the association said. German radio network MDR recently accused EFSA of having “too close ties” with the chemical industry, saying that some of the authority’s members work in the industry or in organisations close to it. Producers of BPA have pointed out in the past that they are the only ones with the scientific resources to evaluate its effects.
29.11.2010 [217926-0]
Published on 29.11.2010
Bisphenol A: EU verbietet PC-Vorprodukt in BabyflaschenGerman version of this article...

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