Questions and Answers About Bisphenol-A (BPA)

Highlights: 
  • BPA has been used for over 40 years to manufacture strong, durable consumer products.
  • BPA is one of the most studied chemical components ever and the research continues.
  • The FDA’s position is that BPA is safe in food packaging. The agency has performed extensive research on BPA, has reviewed hundreds of other studies, and is continuing to address questions and potential concerns raised by certain studies. 
  • BPA is a basic component in the lining of cans that prevents corrosion and helps maintain a food’s quality, flavor and safety.
  • Leading U.S. and international food safety agencies have evaluated the science on BPA and continue to affirm its safety in food packaging.
  • Packaging serves important food safety function – it protects food from contaminants and keeps food fresh.
  • According to the FDA and many other global food safety agencies, there’s no need to change what we buy or how we eat.
BPA

Recently, there has been increased interest in the safety of bisphenol A (BPA) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to affirm its safe use as a food packaging compound.

What is Bisphenol A?

BPA is chemical component used in the manufacture of polycarbonate plastic or epoxy resins, which are used in some food packaging materials, such as the lining inside metal-based food and beverage cans, reusable plastic containers for food and beverages, tableware, and other products used in everyday life.

  • Polycarbonate and epoxy resins are also safety used in other everyday consumer products such as cell phones, computers, household appliances, bicycle helmets and flooring.  
  • They have been used in consumer products for well over 40 years and the FDA regulates its use in food packaging materials.  
  • BPA enhances food safety – it protects food and keeps food fresh.

Is BPA safe?

Yes.  Based on the ongoing safety review, the FDA continues to confirm its safe use as a food packaging compound.

can

How is BPA used?

BPA is included for several different purposes depending on the packaging material it is used for.  It is used in cans to make them safer and stronger and helps prevent contamination in foods.

It is important to remember that food packaging serves an important safety purpose in protecting foods from pathogens or other contaminants.

Does BPA migrate out of cans and accumulate in our bodies?

Yes, BPA does migrate at very low levels when it comes into contact with food or other surfaces, but it does not accumulate in our body. The FDA has confirmed that even if BPA enters our body through food, our bodies quickly process and eliminate it.

Regardless of the food and how long it’s been on the shelf, FDA confirms that the levels are so small that they’re safe. And BPA doesn’t stay in the body – we process it and eliminate it very quickly.

What is the FDA doing to ensure public health related to BPA?

The FDA will continue to evaluate the safety of BPA and will continue to provide updates to the public on significant new information as it becomes available.

Related Information:

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA):  Questions and Answers about BPA (June 2013)

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA):  BPA Overview and Message for Consumers

European Food Safety Authority Information on Bisphenol A  

Health Canada Information on Bisphenol A