EFSA will launch a public consultation in July on an updated and extended assessment of exposure in Europe to bisphenol A (BPA), a substance used in food contact materials and in other products. The Authority’s last exposure assessment of BPA was in 2006 and this new assessment will mark a major update, encompassing both dietary and non-dietary sources (including paper, inhalation and dust). While EFSA’s experts have made significant progress in assessing the potential human health risks of BPA, more time is needed to evaluate key health effects identified in animal studies and their possible relevance for human health.
All stakeholders and interested parties will be able to provide their comments on the draft exposure assessment through an online public consultation from mid-July to mid-September 2013. In a second stage in early 2014, EFSA will publicly consult on the human health aspects of its risk assessment prior to finalising its scientific opinion. In the interests of openness and transparency, EFSA will continue to provide regular updates on the progress of this important scientific work.
- BPA is a chemical used to manufacture plastics and resins that may be used to make polycarbonate food containers or protective linings for food and beverage cans.
- EFSA completed its full risk assessment of BPA in 2006 and set a Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) of 0.05 mg/kg body weight/day for this substance. The TDI is an estimate of the amount of a substance, expressed on a body weight basis, that can be ingested daily over a lifetime without appreciable risk. EFSA also evaluated intakes of BPA through food and drink, for adults, infants and children and found that they were all well below the TDI. EFSA has updated its scientific advice on BPA several times since 2006, most recently updating its risk assessment in 2011.
- In February 2012, following further consideration of new scientific studies, the Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids (CEF Panel) decided to undertake a full re-evaluation of the human risks associated with exposure to BPA through the diet, also taking into consideration the contribution of non-dietary sources to the overall exposure to BPA. Besides reviewing all the available data and scientific studies on dietary exposure published since EFSA’s 2006 Opinion, the Panel is further evaluating uncertainties about the possible relevance to human health of some BPA-related effects observed in rodents at low dose levels.