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MINNEAPOLIS – Minneapolis—Dr. David Wallinga, MD, senior advisor for science, food and health at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), issued this statement following the release of today’s decision by the FDA not to ban the use of bisphenol A (BPA) in food packaging.

“The decision released today by the FDA is deeply disappointing. As the body of science continues to grow on bisphenol A, a synthetic estrogen and hormone-disrupting chemical, so does our cause for concern about human exposure. We worry particularly about those most vulnerable among us: developing fetuses, infants and children. In utero or early life exposures to BPA, even at low doses, have been associated in animal and human studies with increased risk of adverse effects on development and reproduction, as well as cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.”

“During the development of a fetus, even a tiny dose of a chemical can disrupt development of the brain or hormone systems, and cause disease that may not be evident for 20 or 40 years. Tests of umbilical cord blood have found over 200 toxic chemicals known to cause cancer or other damage. All of our bodies contain hundreds of toxic chemicals at any given moment and they interact with our unique genetic predispositions making their damage hard to pinpoint and predict.”

“Given the toxic environment that we live in, we need our public agencies to protect us from potential harm when science shows us there is cause for concern. Today, the FDA has failed in protecting the public from what we know to be a problem chemical. It’s another in a long-line of examples of the agency’s weak record on taking action to remove toxics from our food system.”

The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy works locally and globally at the intersection of policy and practice to ensure fair and sustainable food, farm and trade systems.