In an article published on October 9, 2019 by law firm Keller and Heckman LLP (KH), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reported to be developing an expanded, updated database of packaging factors for use with Food Contact Substance Notifications (FCNs). Jessica Cooper from the FDA’s Office for Food Safety Additives explained at KH’s recent seminar that the database will include factors for 550 foods. This is in comparison to only 49 factors available currently. Cooper also previously presented about this planned expansion at the ILSI North America food packaging conference in May 2019 (FPF reported).
The packaging factors are used to estimate the dietary concentration of a food contact substance used in food packaging as part of FCN submissions. The current factors were developed over 40 years ago, and the FDA aims to update them to consider advances in packaging technology and new types of food on the market such as almond milk and energy drinks.
An exact timeline for the development of the database was not presented. The agency still needs to finish analyzing the data, write and publish the methods used, and then allow for public comments and submission of additional data.
Keller and Heckman LLP (October 9, 2019). “FDA’s Approach to New Packaging Factor Database Explained at KH Seminar.”