The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has launched a public consultation on its draft assessment of the risks to human health posed by exposure to the controversial industrial chemical bisphenol A (BPA).
BPA is used as a component in certain types of food contact material, notably in the linings of metal cans and in other types of packaging. Worries over its safety have prompted a number of investigations and in 2012 the EFSA Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids began a comprehensive review of the scientific literature covering more than 450 studies.
The Panel identified likely adverse effects on the liver and kidney and effects on the mammary glands as being linked to exposure to BPA. They therefore recommended that the tolerable daily intake (TDI) for BPA be temporarily lowered from the current 50 µg/kg bodyweight/day to 5 µg/kg bodyweight/day pending further research. Despite this, EFSA does not regard BPA as a health risk to consumers, since typical exposure is well below this temporary TDI.
EFSA is now inviting all stakeholders and interested parties to comment on the draft risk assessment. The consultation will run until 13 March 2014. There will also be a stakeholders meeting to discuss the feedback received during the process.
More information can be found on the EFSA web site here.