Consumers

Consumers can be exposed to BPA via skin contact and oral uptake. BPA originates mainly from food contact materials, cash register receipts, house dust, toys and cosmetics. Consumer exposure to BPA does not exceed the current European standard for safe exposure.

BPA exposure of consumers predominantly comes from food packaging material containing BPA. This includes plastic materials used for storing food and beverages, plastic plates and cutlery, plastic heat resistant  bowls and pots, and plastic coatings of food packaging materials including cans and cardboard. For a number of these products, BPA-free alternatives are now available and may reduce exposure. In 2011, the EU banned the use of BPA in plastic baby bottles. 

Other sources of exposure

In addition, BPA exposure may occur from contact with cash register receipts and cosmetics that have been in contact with material containing BPA. Toys and house dust also contribute to consumer exposure to BPA. 

Risks

There are various measures to control consumer exposure to BPA. For example, there are limits on  the amount of BPA permitted to migrate from food packaging material and toys. Since 2011, the EU has banned the use of BPA in plastic baby bottles. 
 
Based on the most recent data and the current European standard, no adverse effects of BPA exposure are generally expected for consumers. However, recent animal studies have indicated  possible adverse developmental effects on the immune system at exposure levels lower than those used to derive the current European standard. These findings give cause for concern for exposure of the unborn child, infants and young children. Special attention should therefore be given to protecting small children, pregnant women and women who breastfeed.

 

Possible sources of BPA exposure for consumers 

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