Washington—Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today introduced the BPA in Food Packaging Right to Know Act to ensure consumers know whether the chemical Bisphenol-A is used in food packaging.
The bill would require food packaged with BPA to have a label that reads as follows: “This food packaging contains BPA, an endocrine-disrupting chemical, according to the National Institutes of Health.”
Numerous peer-reviewed studies have shown a link between BPA, which mimics the hormone estrogen, and negative health effects, particularly in pregnant women and children.
“Consumers deserve to know if the items they frequently purchase at the grocery store could expose them and their families to BPA,” said Senator Feinstein. “This straightforward bill would simply require packaging that contains BPA to be labeled, so consumers can make the best decisions for their families.”
“Vermont already has acted to ban many BPA food and drink containers in 2010 after health experts and scientists -- including through the National Institutes of Health -- identified the potential harmfulness of these chemicals,” said Senator Leahy. “I firmly believe in the right of consumers to make informed choices. Knowledge is empowering, and knowledge about BPA ingredients can also stimulate further reforms by the marketplace. I am proud to join Senator Feinstein in introducing a bill that will ensure that consumers are better informed about the products they buy.”
This bill also directs Health and Human Services to conduct a safety assessment of food containers containing BPA to determine if there is reasonable certainty that low-dose, long-term exposure will not cause negative health effects. Alternatives to BPA would also be evaluated.
The bill is endorsed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Nurses Association, American Public Health Association, Breast Cancer Fund, Center for Science in the Public Interest, Consumers Union, Environmental Working Group, Endocrine Society and Women’s Voices for the Earth.