FDA weighing ban on chemical BPA

By the end of the month, the Federal Drug Administration needs to decide whether to ban BPA in food and drink containers like baby bottles.

Stacey Vanek Smith: Next week, the Food and Drug Administration will decide whether to ban the chemical BPA from all food and drink containers.

John Dimsdale reports.


John Dimsdale: The Natural Resources Defense Council first petitioned for a BPA ban three years ago, on concerns about the chemical’s effect on brain development in fetuses and babies. And NRDC scientist Sarah Janssen says more recent studies point to cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Sarah Janssen: The new science continues to be compelling and has not diminished our conviction that a hormonally active chemical such as BPA has no place in our food supply. 

Most baby bottle makers have abandoned BPA. The European Union, Canada and around 10 states restrict its use in containers for baby food and drink.

Steve Hentges: Not because of science, but strictly based on an abundance of precaution.

Dr. Steve Hentges is with the American Chemistry Council, a trade group. He says researchers around the world have:

Hentges: Come to the same conclusion that it is safe for use in these products, so there really isn’t any reason to ban it.

Although, bans by other countries will trim exports of U.S. products that are packaged with BPA.

In Washington, I'm John Dimsdale for Marketplace.

About the author

As head of Marketplace’s Washington, D.C. bureau, John Dimsdale provides insightful commentary on the intersection of government and money for the entire Marketplace portfolio.

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