At the Global Food Contact conference, which took place May 14 to 16, 2013, Yoko Kawamura, former director of the Food Additive Division at the National Institute of Health Sciences (NIHS), Japan, contended that the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) is considering the introduction of a positive list for monomers and additives for food contact plastics. She indicated that Japan may also further regulate phthalates and bisphenol A (BPA). The use of di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP; CAS 117-81-7) in polyvinyl chloride (PVC) intended for the packaging of fatty foods is already prohibited. The ban could be expanded to other phthalates and plasticized polymers. According to Kawamura, Japan will regulate metal can coatings and may lower the current migration limit of BPA. Many Japanese manufacturers already use reduced epoxy BPA or coat cans with an additional polymer film.

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Global Food Contact 2013