BPA in food packaging “does not pose a significant health risk”: FSANZ

Posted by Isobel Drake on 15th January 2010

Australia food regulatory agency has given the all clear to the levels of BPA in food packaging as a leading consumer group urges manufacturers to phase out certain plastic food packaging.

Consumer group Choice said earlier this week that they “believe the evidence, while far from conclusive, can no longer be ignored” when it comes to BPA contamination of food. However, FSANZ has advised that they are in agreement with European and US authorities – believing there is little risk at current levels of exposure, although they will monitor any further research carefully.

“Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has worked closely over the last few years with other Government agencies and food regulators overseas to look into any possible risks from the plastic BPA in babies’ bottles and food packaging,” they advised. “We keep a close eye on issues related to the migration of chemicals from packaging and into food, and over the past few years has become aware of a number of reports claiming that chemicals in plastic containers may contaminate the food or liquid inside.

“We don’t regulate plastic baby bottles, as it is the role of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission to regulate consumer products where there is evidence that they are unsafe. However, we have been working closely with the ACCC for a while to assess the safety of food where chemicals may have migrated from plastic packaging into food and may be a potential health risk.

“We have assessed the risk to infants and adults from exposure to BPA and agree with the conclusions reached by the US and European food regulators that the levels of exposure are very low and do not pose a significant health risk.”

The food standards body added that amove by some overseas manufacturers to phase out the packaging in baby bottles was a voluntary action.