OECD outlines sustainable chemistry considerations for designers of plastic products

Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) releases report outlining the goals, considerations, and trade-offs when designing a more ‘sustainable’ plastic product; encourages transparency in chemical composition and manufacturing processes through the supply chain

US congressional committee questions FDA about lack of action on phthalates

Letter from the US House Oversight and Reform Committee to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asks what steps FDA is taking to evaluate human health effects from, or to ban, phthalates in food packaging and processing materials

Ghana publishes roadmap for ‘radical’ reduction of plastic pollution

Ghana National Plastic Action Partnership publishes roadmap to reduce plastic use and pollution in the country; includes 11 case studies of projects already underway; outlines strategies for both public and private institutions to contribute to the vision

Scientists use in silico-based models to prioritize food contact chemicals

Two studies applied computational methods to screen food contact chemicals (FCCs) for carcinogenic properties or interaction with 31 nuclear receptors; one identifies 44 potential carcinogens among 1623 assessed FCCs; other finds more than half of 8091 screened FCCs with high binding affinity for several nuclear receptors

EU Member States endorse 8th Environmental Action Program

Council of the EU announces member states endorsement of recently completed negotiations on the 8th Environmental Action Program (EAP); EAP will guide EU climate and environmental policy until 2030; priority objectives include decreasing the EU’s material and consumption footprints

EFSA publishes guidance on chemical grouping for risk assessments

Final version of European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) guidance prioritizes hazard-driven criteria for grouping chemicals; supports human health risk assessments of combined chemical exposures; recommends relying on mechanistic information on toxicity within a weight-of-evidence approach

US EPA updates protocol for TSCA systematic review

US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) publishes updated draft protocol to select scientific studies used within Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) risk evaluations; replaces 2018 approach and open for public comment; public peer review meeting set for April 19-21, 2022

ECHA webinar outlines assessments of chemical groups

Recorded webinar from European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) presents the agency’s work on assessing regulatory needs of groups of chemicals; provides overview of recently published reports

Canada continues single-use plastics ban, England considers similar action

Canada moves forward with domestic ban of six single-use plastic products; targets checkout bags, cutlery, foodservice ware, ring carriers, stir sticks, and straws; ban may come into force before end of 2022; public consultation until March 5, 2022; England considering similar ban with consultation until February 12, 2022

How does the food and beverage sector address plastic pollution?

Scientists review 68 corporate sustainability reports of major food and beverage companies on plastic pollution and packaging; find most reports do not address plastic pollution and focus on end-of-life options instead of sustainable packaging solutions