March Away From BPA Continues

July 20, 2012

By Ricardo Carvajal

FDA published a Federal Register notice announcing the filing of Rep. Edward J. Markey’s food additive petition asking the agency to amend its regulations “to no longer provide for the use of Bisphenol A (BPA)-based epoxy resins as coatings in packaging for infant formula.”  The petition contends that those uses “have been intentionally and permanently abandoned.”  If granted, the amendment would not be based on safety; therefore, FDA is not asking for comments on the safety of BPA.

Concurrently, FDA published a final rule amending its food additive regulations “to no longer provide for the use of polycarbonate (PC) resins” (which are made with BPA) in baby bottles and sippy cups because those uses  have been abandoned.  That action was taken in response to a petition submitted by the American Chemistry Council.  Because the action was based on abandonment, the preamble to the final rule does not address safety issues.

Not long ago, FDA denied a petition submitted by the Natural Resources Defense Council ("NRDC") to ban BPA in food packaging (see our previous post here).  The steady march away from BPA in a range of consumer food contact articles may help soothe NRDC’s disappointment.