trace chemicals in everyday food packaging cause worry over cumulative threat - plastic film manufacturers
In a study published last year in the journal Environmental Health outlook, the researchers presented five families in San Francisco
No exposure to the daily diet of plastic food.
When they compared urine samples before and after the diet, the scientists were surprised to find out what would be different in a few days: the level of biphenol a in the participants (BPA)
Plunged for hardened polycarbonate plastic-by two-
Average in his thirties
The phthalate DEHP, which gives plastic elasticity, fell by more than half.
These findings seem to confirm the suspicion of many experts: plastic food packaging is the primary source of these potentially harmful chemicals, which are present in the body of most Americans.
Other studies have shown that phthal acid salt (Prominent-ates)
Entering food from processing equipment and food
Prepare gloves, washers and seals on non-Upper
Plastic container, ink used on label
Can penetrate the packaging-
Even plastic film for agriculture.
The government has long known that a small amount of chemicals used to make plastic sometimes migrate to food.
The Food and Drug Administration regulated these immigrants as "indirect food additives" and approved more than 3,000 such chemicals for food
Contact the application from 1958.
It judges safety based on the model, which estimates how much a substance may eventually appear on someone's plate.
If the concentration is low enough (
Almost always trace when these substances appear in food)
Further safety testing is not required.
At the same time, however, scientists began collecting data on the prevalence of chemicals in food supplies and the cumulative effects of chemicals at small doses.
Some health advocates are worried about their findings.
This is "a huge problem, no [regulator]
Attention is being paid, "said Janet nunderman, program and policy director of the non-profit Breast Cancer Fund, which focuses on environmental causes of illness.
"It doesn't make sense to regulate food safety and then put food into unsafe packaging.
How common are these chemicals?
Researchers found traces of possibly carcinogenic styrene in instant noodles sold in polystyrene cups.
They have detected non-ethyl phenol. an estrogen-
Chemical substances produced by the decomposition of antioxidants in simulated plastics
In apple juice and infant formula.
They found traces of other hormones.
Destroying chemicals in a variety of foods: flame retardant in butter, Teflon in microwave popcorn, and dibutyl tin-
A heat stabilizer for PVC
In beer, margarine, mayonnaise, processed cheese and wine.
They found unknown estrogen-like substances from plastic water bottles.
Given the limited information collected and disclosed by regulators, the scientific challenges of this study and the secrets of the food and packaging industry, it is almost impossible to find out which chemicals may penetrate into your groceries, treat its components as proprietary information.
Although scientists have learned more about the way these substances are made
Potential impact on health
Scientists, policy makers and industry experts have debated fiercely about what level is safe.
With Americans exposed to multiple chemicals, the problem of cumulative exposure becomes more complex
There are Baptist products every day.
These problems remain unresolved, said Linda Burnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences under the National Institutes of Health.
Nevertheless, she said, "we do know that if chemicals act in the same way that they will act in the way that they will act as additives "--
This means that the various chemicals taken separately at very small doses may have an effect on certain organ systems or tissues as if they were single cumulative doses.
The US chemical Commission says there is no reason to worry.
"All materials used for contact with food must meet the FDA's strict safety requirements before going public," said spokeswoman Catherine Murray St . ". John.
"The scientific experts reviewed the full weight of all the evidence in making such a security decision.
"In terms of food packaging and processing, the most frequently studied reagent is O-benzene Ester, a chemical used for lubricants and solvents as well as for making PVC soft. (
PVC for food processing and packaging industries such as pipes, conveyor belts, food
Prepare gloves and packing. )
Because they have no chemical combination with plastic, it is easy to escape.
Some seem to have little harm, but animal and human epidemiology studies have shown that a phthalate, known as DEHP, interferes with testosterone during development.
Research shows that low
Dose exposure of chemicals associated with male reproductive diseases, thyroid dysfunction, and subtle behavioral changes.
However, it is notoriously difficult to measure the amount of neighboring benzene ester that eventually enters the food.
Because these chemicals are everywhere, they even pollute the equipment that is said to be a sterile laboratory.
In the first such study in the United States, chemist Kurunthachalam Kannan and Arnold Schecter of The New York State Department of Health, an environmental health expert at the University of Texas Health Science Center designed a protocol to analyze 72 different phthal ate foods.
Schecter will not be released before the results are announced.
He hopes later this year
In addition to saying that he found DEHP in many of the samples tested.
Perhaps the most controversial chemical in food packaging is BPA, which is mainly present in the epoxy lining of food cans, mimicking natural estrogen in the body.
Many researchers will be low
Doses exposed to BPA can lead to late issues such as breast cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
But no associations were found in other studies.
Canada declared BPA toxic in October 2010, but industry and regulators in the United States and other countries insisted that health problems were exaggerated.
Last month, the FDA rejected a petition banning this chemical, saying in a statement that while "some studies raise questions about whether BPA is related to various health effects, there are still serious problems with these studies, especially those related to human and public health impacts.
"Plastic bottles, plastic bags or bathtubs can filter chemicals, which is not necessarily harmful to human health.
In fact, the key question for the FDA is not whether a chemical can migrate to a food product, but how much it may be consumed by a consumer.
If simulation and modeling studies predict that a service contains less than 0.
5 parts of every billion suspicious chemicals
Equivalent to half a salt at the Olympics
FDA guidance does not require further safety testing.
Subject to the manufacture of poison at a dose, the agency approved some potential hazardous substances in food
Contact uses including phosphate, ethylene chloride and formaldehyde.
But critics now question the logic.
On the one hand, it does not take into account the emerging science about chemicals that interfere with natural hormones and may be much lower than what is believed to cause health problems.
Animal studies have found that exposure to the fetus to BPA doses below the FDA safety threshold affects breast and prostate cells, brain structure and chemistry, and even affects later behavior.
According to Swiss researcher Jane Munk, he reviewed decades of literature on chemicals used in packaging, with at least 50 known or suspected endocrine compounds
Vandalism has been approved as food
Thomas neitner said: "Some of these chemicals have been approved in the 1960 s, and I think we have learned some knowledge about health since then, "Director of the Pew Charity Trust project, which looks at how the FDA regulates food additives.
"Unless an FDA individual reviews these decisions based on scientific developments over the past 30 years, it is difficult to say what is safe and what is unsafe in the food supply.
FDA spokesman Doug Callas in an email
The email interview said before approving the new food
Contact material, when the estimated exposure indicates the need, the agency investigated the possibility of hormonal disruption.
But FDA officials believe the data are not low.
The dose exposure certificate needs to be modified 0.
5 ppb exposure thresholds that have been approved or substances re-evaluated.
Another criticism is that the FDA does not consider cumulative dietary exposure.
"The risk assessment is only one chemical at a time, but we don't eat that," Schecter notes . ". (
Karas retorted, "there is currently no good way to evaluate the effects of these types. ”)
"The whole system is good for food and packaging companies, and it's not good for protecting public health," said Nederman of the Breast Cancer Fund.
She and others are concerned that the FDA relies on manufacturers to provide immigration data and preliminary security information, which protects the findings as confidential.
Therefore, consumers cannot know what chemicals and quantities they put on the table every day.
It is not just consumers who lack information.
Companies that make food in packaging can face the same black box.
Brand owners generally do not know the complete chemical composition of their packaging, which is usually done through a series of suppliers.
Also, they may have a hard time getting answers if they ask.
Nancy Hirshberg, vice president of natural resources at Stonyfield Farm, described how organic yogurt producers decided in 2010 to launch a multi-pack Yogurt for children in a container made of corn PLAbased plastic.
Since children are particularly vulnerable to hormone disturbances and other chemicals, the company wants to ensure that no harmful chemicals are migrated to food.
Stonyfield is able to find out all the ingredients in the new package except 3%.
But when asked to identify 3%, the plastic supplier declined to disclose what it believed was a trade secret.
To break the deadlock, Stonyfield hired a consultant who made a list of 2,600 chemicals that were not wanted in the dairy packaging.
The supplier confirmed that there was no yogurt cup in the yogurt cup and the third party verified the information.
The author of plastic: a poisonous love story is Freinkel.
"The article was written in collaboration with the Food and Environmental Reporting Network, an independent non-profit news organization that produces survey reports on food, agriculture and environmental health.