Why is BPA in Food Products Not Banned in the United States?

What is BPA?

Bisphenol A, BPA at is more commonly known, is a synthetic estrogen used in many polycarbonate plastics.  It is also used to line canned foods and drinks. BPA is a known carcinogen and has been banned in many countries but not the United States. The latest move to ban BPA from food products has been shut down after four years of consideration.  The National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) filed a petition to ban the use of BPA in 2008, and after four years of deliberation, the FDA made a surprising move by denying the NRDC’s petition.

Why is Bisephenal A Bad?

BPA disrupts the endocrine system which can increase the odds of developing breast cancer, prostate cancer, brain cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. In addition, it has been proven to cause aneuploidy in mice. Aneuploidy in humans can result in miscarriages, Down Syndrome, and many other debilitating conditions.  Serious injury from contamination occurs around the world every day.

What Other Countries Have Banned Using BPA in Food?

Japan quietly started phasing out BPA in its food products in 1998, successfully eliminating it from food containers by 2003.  Now Japan’s canned food and drink products contain no BPA.

Canada declared BPA toxic and banned it from baby bottles, baby drinking containers, and food products sold across the country.  It even phased out U.S. manufactured bottles and food containers in an effort to protect its citizens from the harmful effects of BPA.

Sweden is the latest country to ban BPA from food and beverage products in April of 2012.  Sweden’s government has given manufacturers a three-month phase-out period to find replacements for the BPA liners in their products.  This also includes non-food materials such as receipt paper, thermal paper, pipes, toys, and tickets.

The FDA’s Feet-Dragging

The United States struck down the NRDC’s petition to ban BPAs in food products. The FDA continues to drag its feet on this issue, claiming that they need more time to investigate BPA. With so much risk involved, it is ridiculous for the FDA to continue allowing a product that is known to cause several serious ailments.  Hopefully, the FDA will open its eyes to the progress made around the globe and move to stop the use of BPA in children and household goods.  If Japan could easily faze BPA out of all products in just five years, it is ludicrous and irresponsible for government regulators to keep dragging their feet on this issue.