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GMA Statement in Response to National Workgroup for Safe Markets BPA Study

GMA Press Contact

Roger Lowe / Brian Kennedy

office: 202-295-3954 / 202-639-5994

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) today issued the following statement by Senior Vice President and Chief Science and Regulatory Affairs Officer Robert E. Brackett in response to the recently released National Workgroup for Safe Markets report on BPA:

“BPA has been used for over 30 years to improve the safety and quality of food and beverages, including by providing protective coatings for cans. Scientists and regulatory agencies who have reviewed BPA have concluded that BPA is safe for use in these products. In particular, the European Food Safety Authority, the World Health Organization, the Japanese National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology and Health Canada have found that BPA is safe for use in consumer products. Food regulators around the world are continuing to re-evaluate the evidence and our industry is committed to keeping abreast of the latest scientific research and findings related to the safety of BPA. In January, FDA affirmed these assessments and once again found that foods in cans with linings that utilize BPA are safe. All of these findings are ignored by the National Workgroup for Safe Market’s report on BPA.

“Regulatory agencies around the world have based their safety affirmation of BPA on a wealth of data. In fact, there is no new science in the National Workgroup for Safe Markets’ report – all of the credible information in the report is well known to regulatory agencies and has been considered in their review and affirmation of the safety of BPA.

“Though robust research is ongoing to find alternatives, contrary to some reports, there is currently no replacement for BPA that will work across the board for all foods and metal packaging applications, because food formulations and processing requirements differ. The consumer packaged goods industry is continually looking for new and improved technologies. But the performance of any technology that could impact the safety of food or beverages must be proven over the entire shelf life of the product before it can be widely used.

“We rely on the current and recently reaffirmed regulatory determinations by FDA that foods in cans with linings that utilize BPA are safe. Currently, the FDA is reviewing BPA again and is expected to complete an updated safety assessment within the next 18 to 24 months. In addition, the National Institutes of Health is devoting $30 million to study the safety of BPA. We should not get ahead of these two important projects. We welcome FDA and NIH review of BPA - These two projects will add to the already robust catalogue of scientific evidence on BPA. We look forward to working cooperatively and responsively with HHS, FDA, NIH, Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), other stakeholders and the world’s food safety agencies in our continuous efforts to ensure the safety and quality of our products and packaging.”