E.U. food panel confirms B.P.A. intake levels

by Keith Nunes
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PARMA, ITALY — The European Food Safety Authority’s panel for Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids (C.E.F.) has issued a review of the scientific literature on the toxicity of Bisphenol A (B.P.A.) and concluded there is no evidence that warrants changing the current tolerable daily intake for B.P.A. of 0.05 mg per kg of body weight.

The C.E.F. panel members acknowledged that some recent studies report adverse effects on animals exposed to B.P.A. during development at doses well below those used to determine the current total daily intake. The studies show biochemical changes in the central nervous system, effects on the immune system and enhanced susceptibility to breast cancer. At the same time, the studies have many shortcomings, according to the panel. At present the C.E.F. said the relevance of the findings for human health may not be assessed, though should any new relevant data become available in the future the panel said it would reconsider its opinion.

One C.E.F. panel member expressed a minority opinion that said some recent studies point to uncertainties regarding adverse health effects below the level used to determine the current total daily intake. Although the member agreed with the rest of the panel’s general view that the studies may not be used to establish a lower total daily intake, the expert recommended the current total daily intake should become a temporary total daily intake.

“For the third time since 2007, and as a result of a comprehensive review of more than 800 recent studies, E.F.S.A. has again confirmed that Bisphenol A is safe for use in products that come in contact with food,” said Steven G. Hentges, of the American Chemistry Council. “Consumers around the world can be reassured that E.F.S.A.’s intense scientific scrutiny continues to reaffirm the safety of B.P.A. in food contact applications, and again concludes that established safe intake levels for B.P.A. provide a sufficient margin of safety for protection of consumers, including for infants and young children.”

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