The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has said it will conduct a review of the latest scientific evidence on the safety of bisphenol A (BPA) following a damning report from the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) that raised concerns over BPA’s effects on the immune systems of unborn children and infants.
The compound, which is used to make plastic food packaging, has been the subject of controversy in recent years. The EFSA’s stance until now has been that at current levels of consumption, the levels of BPA most people are exposed to are not a health hazard. But the RIVM report pointed to two studies that showed even low exposures can impair rats’ immune systems in the very early stages of life.
At the time the EFSA conducted its last review into BPA in 2014 these studies had not been published. That review resulted in the safe exposure limits being revised from 50 to 4µg per kilogram of body weight per day. The EFSA will consult on the latest BPA research next year and is expected to report its findings in 2018.