Tackling the toxics in plastics packaging

Article in PLOS Biology discusses hazardous chemicals in plastics; highlights chemicals as critical but often missing aspect in plastic pollution discussion; proposes rethinking current approach to plastic packaging toxicity testing

EFSA working group updates in November 2020 to March 2021

Minutes from recent meetings of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) CEP panel and working groups on bisphenol A (BPA), food contact materials (FCMs), recycling plastics, and phthalates published; groups continue discussions and revisions of draft opinions; new working group on re-evaluation of phthalates and structurally similar substances in FCMs launched

ANSES proposes listing bisphenol B as SVHC

French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety (ANSES) proposes listing bisphenol B as REACH substance of very high concern (SVHC), suggests bisphenol B is an even more dangerous endocrine disruptor than bisphenol A; public consultation for identification dossier open until April 23, 2021

Rite Aid expands chemical policy to include FCMs

Drug store chain Rite Aid expands its chemicals policy to cover food contact materials (FCMs); restricted substances list sets concentration limits, does not allow intentional use in food packaging of various heavy metals, all ortho-phthalates, all per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS)

Maine FCC priority list open for comments

Maine Department of Environmental Protection publishes list of ten food contact chemicals (FCCs) of high concern, follows state’s Toxic Chemicals in Food Packaging legislation; includes bisphenols, parabens, benzophenone, 4-octyl phenol, octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane, toluene, styrene, benzene methylenedianiline, nonylphenol; open for comments until March 10, 2021

Test finds majority of FCAs contain DEHP

Swedish Chemicals Agency (KEMI) finds endocrine disrupting chemical bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP) in 48 of 60 (80%) of tested paper/board food packaging items; detects also dibutylphthalat (DBP) and Bisphenol A (BPA)

Canada proposes grouping BPA analogues, alternatives

Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) and Health Canada (HC) propose grouping 343 bisphenol A (BPA) structural analogues and functional alternatives under Chemicals Management Plan; request feedback on selection method and grouping until February 17, 2021

OEHHA readds BPA as reproductive toxicant

Developmental endpoint added again to reproductive toxicity listing of bisphenol A (BPA) under California’s Proposition 65; ends eight-year long legal dispute between American Chemistry Council (ACC) and Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA)

ECHA RAC: New hazard classification melamine and BPS

European Chemicals Agency’s Risk Assessment Committee (ECHA RAC) agrees on classifications of bisphenol S as category 1b reproductive toxicant, melamine as category 2 carcinogen

EU court confirms BPA as SVHC for endocrine effects on wildlife

Industry association PlasticsEurope loses third court case challenging legal classification of bisphenol A (BPA) as substance of very high concern (SVHC); EU General Court supports European Chemicals Agency’s recognition of BPA’s endocrine disrupting effects on wildlife