A petition to have BPA banned was denied by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The regulatory agency said it will not ban BPA now and it may never ban it. Those that want BPA banned say it is a toxic chemical that should not be in the food supply. They said the FDA has failed to protect the health and safety of Americans, even though scientific studies raise a number of disturbing questions about BPA’s long lasting effects.
Jane Halloran a director of Consumer Union, an arm of Consumer Reports, said, “We are very disappointed by the decision set forth by the FDA. We think there is ample evidence from the scientific field that enough health risks from BPA are present.”
BPA is used to manufacture clear, hard plastic known as polycarbonate. Reusable water bottles and baby bottles, unless labeled as BPA-free are made from the polycarbonate. Toilet paper and receipts from cash registers are also tainted with the substance. However, the majority of people’s exposure comes from the epoxy resins that are used in the lining of beverage cans and metal food containers.
Almost all experts agree that in large amounts BPA is considered toxic. However, the big question is whether the population is exposed to large enough amounts of BPA for it to be dangerous to our health. Studies using laboratory animals shows that BPA is cancer causing. Studies in humans have linked high levels of BPA in the blood to reproductive abnormalities, thyroid problems, obesity, heart disease and childhood behavioral problems.
The FDA said it was working on a completely new safety review that will take place this year regarding BPA.