Health Canada Reaffirms Safety of BPA for Use in Infant Formula Packaging


Newswise — Health Canada has reassured Canadians that BPA is safe for use in infant formula packaging in a recent announcement regarding its final assessment of bisphenol A (BPA).

Health Canada's assessment included a number of risk management strategies for BPA, including applying the As Low as Reasonably Achievable (ALARA) principle to minimize exposure of BPA to newborns and infants up to 18 months of age. Health Canada has stated BPA "exposure to newborns and infants is below levels that cause effects."

Health Canada also indicated it would continue to work with industry to reduce the potential migration levels of BPA in infant formula to as low as reasonably achievable. The International Formula Council* (IFC) continues to work with Health Canada, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the metal packaging industry to pursue this goal and further ensure the safety of infants and young children. Dr. John Rost, chair of the North American Metal Packaging Alliance, has stated, "We certainly understand the Canadian government's desire to be prudent when it comes to the safety of infants and toddlers. The levels of BPA found in infant formula are already significantly lower than the safe level designated by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which has the lowest regulated limit in the world and has recently reaffirmed the safety of this application."

Health Canada's assessment of the safety of metal packaging for foods and beverages including infant formula is consistent with those that have been conducted by the FDA, EFSA and the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, among others. BPA is not an ingredient in infant formula; it is only present in trace amounts in some of the packaging of canned foods, such as infant formula.

IFC takes all safety issues very seriously. Parents can be assured infant formula is safe and nutritious. Further information is available at http://www.infantformula.org.

*The International Formula Council is an association of manufacturers and marketers of formulated nutrition products, e.g., infant formulas and adult nutritionals, whose members are based predominantly in North America. IFC members are: Abbott Nutrition; Mead Johnson Nutirtionals; Nestlé Infant Nutrition; and Wyeth Nutrition.

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