BPA leaches from ’safe’ products
Susanne Rust and Meg Kissinger, Journal Sentinel - Nov. 15, 2008
Products marketed for infants or billed as “microwave safe” release toxic doses of the chemical bisphenol A when heated, an analysis by the Journal Sentinel has found.
The newspaper had the containers of 10 items tested in a lab - products that were heated in a microwave or conventional oven. Bisphenol A, or BPA, was found to be leaching from all of them.
The amounts detected were at levels that scientists have found cause neurological and developmental damage in laboratory animals. The problems include genital defects, behavioral changes and abnormal development of mammary glands. The changes to the mammary glands were identical to those observed in women at higher risk for breast cancer.
The newspaper’s test results raise new questions about the chemical and the safety of an entire inventory of plastic products labeled as “microwave safe.” BPA is a key ingredient in common household plastics, including baby bottles and storage containers. It has been found in 93% of Americans tested.
The newspaper tests also revealed that BPA, commonly thought to be found only in hard, clear plastic and in the lining of metal food cans, is present in frozen food trays, microwaveable soup containers and plastic baby food packaging.
Food companies advise parents worried about BPA to avoid microwaving food in plastic containers, especially those with the recycling No. 7 stamped on the bottom.
But the Journal Sentinel’s testing found BPA leaching from containers with different recycling numbers, including Nos. 1, 2 and 5.