The government’s decision was taken in light of a report from its own National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) published on 3 March. This states: ‘New animal studies show that BPA can impair the immune system of unborn and young children at a lower exposure level than the one on which the current [EU] standards are based.
‘Exposure during pregnancy and at a young age, [means] children could have a greater probability of developing food intolerances and could become more susceptible to infectious diseases.’
The government decision, and the RIVM research, will add to the weight of opinion that is pushing the food contact industry to
switch to alternatives to BPA in key applications, like coatings for metal cans.
This is happening even though there is still a lack of evidence on the safety of substitutes and dispute over the endocrine disrupting effect attributed to BPA.
The RIVM study is the second half of a two-part report. The first half was published in September 2014.
The Dutch attitude is in contrast to the most recent European Food Safety Agency (Efsa) opinion on BPA issued on 21 January 2015. This concluded the chemical did not pose any health risk at current exposure levels.
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