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French MPs vote to ban BPA in food containers

France's lower parliamentary house, the Assemblée Nationale, has unanimously agreed to extend a ban on the chemical bisphenol A (BPA) from baby bottles to all food containers. The senate is likely to vote on the plan around the end of the year

13.10.2011 |ENDS Daily

Under the plan, BPA would be banned from food containers aimed at children under the age of three from 2013. The manufacture and sale of all food containers with BPA would be banned a year later. In a speech on 7 October, French health and employment minister Xavier Bertrand said he backed the proposal.

The proposal, which was tabled in June by a group of MPs, received a boost following the recent publication of a report by French food safety agency ANSES on the risks posed by BPA. One of the main conclusions is that the chemical can pose risks, even at low concentrations. It also found food containers to be the main source of exposure.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is now reviewing the findings of this report. In a statement on Wednesday, environment and health group RES said EFSA “cannot keep ignoring scientific evidence by maintaining a tolerable daily intake threshold that does not take into account BPA's effects at low concentrations”.

Denmark banned BPA in food-contact materials for children under three in July 2010, and the Swedish national food administration has asked industry to present phase-out plans for epoxy can linings and plastic food-contact materials for children by 2012.