I wrote the top three USA food manufacturers and asked what they planned to do about BPA in can liners. I expected the usual dissembling by company representatives, but I did not think I would not receive an answer from two of the companies.
General Mills did answer my inquiry, but the tone of the email was: research shows BPA to be safe. We know people would like us to use something other than BPA, so we are looking into alternatives. Does this seem familiar? It reminds me of "cigarettes are perfectly safe," "global warming is a myth," "fracking does not affect water supplies" and "nuclear power is perfectly safe" . . .
General Mills can coating
Friday, Aprhowsil 22, 2011 9:54 AM
From: "Consumer Services-Help"
Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a critical component of protective coatings widely used in metal food packaging to help preserve food and maintain its nutritional value and quality. Most canned food and beverage products on the market today use BPA in the can lining or can lid.
Scientific and governmental bodies worldwide have examined the science and concluded that the weight of evidence continues to support the safety of BPA, including comprehensive risk assessments in Japan and in the European Union. While studies continue, food safety regulators are not recommending any specific changes or actions in can lining applications, including those using BPA.
General Mills uses can coatings that fully comply with all applicable global requirements for safe use in food contact materials. But we know that some consumers would like us to pursue alternatives – and we are working intensively with our can suppliers and manufacturers to develop and test linings that do not use BPA. While alternatives have not been identified for all types of foods, we did identify a safe, viable alternative for our tomato products under the Muir Glen brand. We began transitioning those to the alternative cans with the fall 2010 tomato harvest.
With other alternatives currently being tested, we are optimistic that new options will be identified in time. When viable alternative prove safe and effective for other products, we would expect can suppliers and the food industry – in response to consumer interest – to convert to alternative coatings
General Mills Consumer Services
Below is information contained in the article, "Food Packaging and Bisphenol A and Bis(2-Ethylhexyl) Phthalate Exposure: Findings from a Dietary Intervention" in Environmental Health Perspectives.
Hundreds of peer-reviewed studies have linked BPA to a significant list of health and development problems, including birth defects, breast and prostate cancer, early puberty, infertility, obesity, chromosome and reproductive abnormalities, diabetes, heart disease and neurobehavioral problems. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), BPA has been detected in 93 percent of Americans age six and older, confirming persistent exposures occurring throughout the population.
If you wish to read more about the dangers of BPA, please read these previous posts on Endangered Spaces:
B is for Bisphenol A (BPA)
Endangered Spaces blog: Do YOU Approve of Chemicals in Your Home?
Stop Poisoning Our Babies
Poisons in Our Homes
Toxic Toys for Tots
Stay away from food in metal cans. Frozen foods, foods in glass jars or dehydrated foods do not contain BPA. If we all quit buying foods in metal cans, the manufacturers will have to face the facts.