Bill banning BPA re-introduced

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, March 25, 2011 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

In 2008, the legislature admitted that they knew very little about the science and safety of chemicals by passing two Green Chemistry laws giving responsibility for making those decisions to the scientists within the California Environmental Protection Agency.  However, in 2009 Senator Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills) pushed SB 797 attacking the use of bisphenol-A (BPA).  It fortunately died on the floor of the Senate when it came up for concurrence.  There is a re-introduction of the bill this year, AB 1319 (Betsy Butler, D-Marina del Rey) to ban BPA in products like bottles, jars, cups or canned foods.

BPA is not only used in products like bottles and cups, but also as a protective lining on the inside of metal lids and containers.  These linings serve an important role to prevent corrosion of the metal and contamination of the food and beverages within the container.  The linings also play an important role in preserving the quality and safety of the food.

AB 1319 would prohibit the manufacture, distribution or sale of any liquid, food or beverage in a can, jar or plastic bottle intended for consumption by infants or children under the age of four containing BPA at a level above .1 parts per billion.  In addition, the bill prohibits liquid infant formulas in cans or plastic bottles containing or lined with BPA as of July 1, 2013. Manufacturers would be required to use the least toxic alternative to BPA.

Unfortunately, there is no readily available, suitable alternative to the BPA-based can coating that would meet essential safety and performance requirements for the broadest spectrum of all foods now packaged in metal containers.  The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA), in January of 2010, stated,

"If we thought it was unsafe, we would be taking strong regulatory action.  FDA is not recommending that families change the use of infant formula or foods, as the benefit of a stable source of good nutrition outweighs the potential risk of BPA exposure.  FDA does support the use of baby bottles with BPA."

CMTA will again be opposing the ban of this chemical.  It runs contrary to the consensus of the scientific community and international regulatory agencies that have concluded BPA is safe as used.

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