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FDA rejects BPA petition

Friday, March 30, 2012

FDA rejects BPA petition: Statement by Consumers Union
WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today rejected a petition to ban the chemical bisphenol-A (BPA) from food and beverage containers.

The FDA said the information in the petition submitted by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) “was not sufficient to persuade FDA … to initiate rulemaking to revoke the food additive approvals for BPA,” but the agency said it would “continue in its broader and more comprehensive review of emerging data and information on BPA.”

Jean Halloran, the director of food policy initiatives at Consumers Union, the policy arm of Consumer Reports, said, “We’re disappointed with the FDA’s decision because we think there’s ample scientific evidence about the health risks of BPA for the agency to take action now and ban it from food and drink packaging.”

Ami Gadhia, senior policy counsel for Consumers Union, said “We’re going to keep pressing the FDA to ban BPA. We also support congressional efforts to take BPA off the market entirely.”

BPA, a chemical found in the lining of cans and in certain plastic products, has potential links to a wide range of health effects, including an increased risk of diseases or disorders of the brain, reproductive, and immune systems.

In an article published in December 2009, Consumer Reports tested canned foods, including soups, juice, tuna, and green beans, and found that almost all of the 19 name-brand foods tested contained some BPA.

While these tests simply offered a snapshot of the marketplace, the findings were notable because they indicated the extent of potential exposure: Consumers eating just one serving of the canned vegetable soup tested by Consumer Reports would get about double what the FDA has considered typical average dietary daily exposure.

Contact: David Bulter, 202-462-6262