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Bisphenol A

Volume 485: debated on Thursday 18 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what steps his Department has taken to discourage the use of food and drinks packaging containing bisphenol A; (244954)

(2) what recent assessment his Department has made of the safety of food and drinks packaging containing bisphenol A.

The Food Standards Agency has been working closely with the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to ensure that the safety of bisphenol A (BPA) is kept under review. EFSA last reviewed the safety of BPA in July this year taking into account recent data from North America. They reiterated their conclusions from 2006 establishing a tolerable daily intake for consumers of 0.05 milligrams per kilogram of bodyweight per day. Monitoring data from the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has found that the level of BPA that UK consumers are exposed to is well below this level. The FSA has nevertheless explored with the packaging industry the possibility of developing alternatives to BPA. However, this is a long-term project which is likely to take several years to complete to ensure any alternatives maintain food safety.