Plastics – BPA

BPA (Bisphenol A) is in the news again today (see links below, or just google it!). Here’s a summary:

  • BPA is found in linings of canned food and soft drinks, plastic bottles (including plastic baby bottles), hard clear plastics like sports bottles and plastic containers, and food wrapping.
  • BPA is linked to cancer (by disrupting hormone systems in the body that can prevent cancer), heart disease, sexual dysfunction, liver disorders, and development in small children.
  • In 2008 Canada declared BPA as a toxin and banned its use in baby bottles.
  • To show how prevalent it is, more than 90% of U.S. population had traces of BPA in their urine according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • BPA leeches into food even at cold temperatures.
  • A bill has been proposed in the U.S. Congress that would ban BPA from all food and drink packages in the USA.
  • The BPA industry has been fiercely fighting these restrictions. No surprise, considering the industry produces more than 6 billion tons of BPA annually.
  • There are 30 states in the USA that have bills pending for the ban on BPA.
  • The six largest manufactures of baby bottles announced they would voluntarily stop selling bottles made with BPA, in the United States.

With increasing awareness and ban on BPA in North America and Europe, the BPA industry is heading to “third-world” countries. The common recommendation is to avoid bottles/plastics with the “No. 7” symbol at the bottom as they are likely to contain BPA. But what about in countries where no such standards are in place?

Might as well stop using plastics all together (or for that matter anything “modern” like non-stick) and stick to “tradition” — good old stainless steel. Maybe even switch back to tiffin carriers and steel tumblers.

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