Documents suggest plastic recycling never intended to work

EcoWatch article presents evidence that manufacturers knew since 1970s that plastic recycling is not viable economically; recent survey finds only 1/3 of UK food product packaging locally recyclable; manufacturer singles out PET as way forward towards circular economy

Petition calls for US FDA to consider cumulative effects

Coalition requests US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to follow its own mandate to consider cumulative effects of chemicals present during safety assessments; covers chemicals directly added to food, substances migrating from food packaging, substances generally recognized as safe (GRAS); finds only 1 of 877 existing GRAS notifications adhered to requirement

New York Times investigates PFAS and pregnancy

Publishes second article in three-part series on hazardous chemical exposure at home; provides overview of research on toxicity of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) to developing fetuses, young children; profiles US families with high PFAS concentrations in drinking water, efforts to restrict uses

ECHA finds 1 in 4 imported products non-compliant

European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) completes pilot enforcement project focused on restricted substances cadmium, lead, nickel; finds 23% of inspected products not compliant with EU chemicals regulations

Food Watch petition calls for end of excessive food packaging

Identifies examples of mostly empty packaged food products filled with air in French supermarkets; finds excess packaging not intended to protect food, only serves to convey increased product size; public petition launched to call on specific brands to improve

Walmart responds to increase in use of priority chemicals

US retailer reports 1% increase in footprint across its product assortment from 2017 to 2018; aims to achieve 10% reduction by 2022; plans to finish analysis and publish most recent data later this year

ECHA director responds to criticisms

Interview with Bjorn Hansen discusses efficiency of data sharing across chemical assessments, incompleteness of REACH registration dossiers, identification of additional SVHCs, and the upcoming EU chemicals strategy

BfR recommends lowering EU limits on heavy metals

German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) publishes position statement on specific migration limits for lead, cadmium, and cobalt from ceramic food contact materials; derives recommended limits up to 400 times lower than values allowed by current directive

In vitro toxicity of bioplastics and plant-based materials

Scientists investigate in vitro toxicity of extracts from bioplastics and plant-based food contact articles; find strongest toxicity induced by cellulose- and starch-based products; emphasize similar toxicity profiles among bio-based, biodegradable, and conventional plastics

Greenpeace report criticizes plastic-to-fuel technologies

Organization reviews current chemical recycling projects, finds less than half are plastic-to-plastic recycling, none likely to become viable; criticizes labeling waste- and plastic-to-fuel technologies as ‘chemical recycling’, describes it as misleading for governments, investors and the public