Mar 28 2012

Feinstein Congratulates Abbott Labs for giving up on BPA

Company joins growing list of retailers and states taking action

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today praised the announcement by Abbott Labs, the maker of Similac brand formula, for discontinuing the use of the toxic chemical bisphenol A (BPA) in the packaging of its infant nutrition products.

“I am pleased with the announcement by Abbott Labs that its infant nutrition products are now BPA-free in the United States.  They are one of many responsible companies taking the lead to reduce or remove this toxic chemical from its packaging,” said Feinstein.

Senator Feinstein is the sponsor of S. 136, the Ban Poisonous Additives Act of 2011, (S. 136), which would establish a federal ban on the chemical bisphenol A in baby bottles, sippy cups, baby food, and infant formula.

“It is my hope that this spirit of volunteerism will inspire other companies including those that manufacture soft drinks and canned foods to discontinue the use of BPA,” Feinstein added.  “In the event that more companies do not act, I’ve urged the FDA to make a decision that favors human health, not the chemical industry, and to eliminate BPA from our food supply.”

This week, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is expected to announce a decision to continue to permit the use BPA in food packaging.

“Hundreds of scientific studies link BPA to harmful health effects, particularly at early stages of a child’s development. This is why I will continue to press ahead with my efforts to ban BPA from children’s products at the federal level until BPA is banned once and for all.”

Click here to read Senator Feinstein’s letter to the FDA.     

The six largest baby bottle and sippy cup manufacturers in the U.S. – Gerber Avent, Evenflo, Disney First Years, Dr. Brown, and Playtex Products, Inc. – offer BPA-free products.  Other manufacturers offer some BPA-free alternatives or have completely banned its use including: Born Free, Green to Grow, Klean Kanteen, Medala, Munchkin, Nuby Sippy Cups, Playtex, Think Baby, and Weil Baby.  

Many major retailers have taken action and sell BPA-free baby bottles and cups including: CVS, Kmart, Kroger, Rite Aid, Safeway, Sears, Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us, Wal-Mart, Wegmans, and Whole Foods.

Last year, California became the 11th state to pass a ban on BPA, joining Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin.  The states join countries like China, France, Denmark, Canada, Malaysia, and the European Commission in taking action against BPA. 

Additional companies taking action include Eden Foods, which phased out BPA from some of their canned foods, and General Mills, which last year announced it would be introducing a BPA-free metal can for their Muir Glen tomatoes.  Heinz, Hain Celestial, ConAgra, and General Mills already use BPA-free can linings for certain products.  Trader Joe’s offers BPA-free cans for a number of products. 

With BPA now out of baby bottles and sippy cups, some states are now looking to protect even more people from the dangers of BPA.  Maryland led that charge this year by passing a law to remove BPA from cash register receipts.

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