July 11, 2013

Lawmaker encourages manufacturers of other food packaging to abandon use of bisphenol A (BPA)  

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman and Senator-elect Edward J. Markey, senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), hailed the agency’s decision to amend its regulations to no longer allow the use of bisphenol A (BPA) in infant formula packaging due to a petition from the lawmaker. In March 2012 Rep. Markey was the first member of Congress to ever submit this type of petition, which requested that the FDA permanently remove regulatory approval for the use of BPA in infant formula packaging. The agency has moved forward with the petition and will be publishing the regulation change in the Federal Register this week. This BPA prohibition will take effect immediately after it is published in the Federal Register.

BPA is used to harden plastics, and it is so prevalent in household items that it has been detected in the bodies of more than 90 percent of the U.S. population, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Researchers have found that BPA leaches from containers into food and beverages and has been linked to a host of health problems, including cancer, reproductive dysfunction and heart disease.

“I applaud the FDA for agreeing to my request to abandon the use of BPA in infant formula packaging,” said Markey. “This is a major victory for America’s families, and I join with parents in celebrating safer feeding time for their babies now that this toxic chemical will forever be banned from infant formula.”

“However, some other industries are ignoring consumer concerns and continue to poison our food supply with this dangerous chemical by including it in other food and beverage packaging, including most canned goods” continued Markey. “With viable alternatives available for BPA, I urge all companies to abandon the use of this toxic chemical, and I will continue my work in the Senate to ensure our entire food supply is free from this damaging chemical.”   

The petition to the FDA, FDA’s response, as well as additional information about Rep. Markey’s work on BPA can be found HERE.

In the past five years, Rep. Markey has led the fight to ban BPA from all food and beverage containers by introducing H.R. 432, the Ban Poisonous Additives Act. A timeline of Markey’s work on removing BPA from food and beverage containers can be found HERE.