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08.29.14

California poised to enact historic flame retardant labeling law

A statement by Breast Cancer Fund Director of Program and Policy Janet Nudelman You have a right to know whether or not toxic flame retardants are in a couch you’re thinking about buying. And fortunately, people in the state of...

08.27.14

The right to know about fracking chemicals

A Q&A with Breast Cancer Fund Director of Science Sharima Rasanayagam What do you see as the biggest problem with fracking? We're in an uncontrolled experiment. We know, from a Congressional investigation, that companies sometimes use carcinogens such as benzene,...

08.22.14

The Case for Transparency: Unveiling the Dirty Secrets of Industry

Guest blog by Breast Cancer Fund Senior Policy Strategist Nancy Buermeyer On Thurs., Aug. 21, the Breast Cancer Fund joined Earthjustice and 4 other health, labor and environmental groups in filing a petition with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requesting...

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FDA registers concern over toxic plastics chemical BPA

FDA fails to take decisive steps to protect public; advocates call for Congressional action

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 15, 2010
Contact: Shannon Coughlin, Breast Cancer Fund, 415-336-2246, scoughlin@breastcancerfund.org

SAN FRANCISCO – In a reversal of the Food and Drug Administration's widely-criticized 2008 declaration that bisphenol A, or BPA, was safe, today the agency said that the chemical warrants "some concern" for its potential effects on children's development.

BPA is a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to breast cancer and other serious health problems. Used in polycarbonate plastic food containers and the lining of food cans, BPA leaches into food and, subsequently, into people. Today the FDA advised parents on ways to reduce infant exposure to BPA while it further investigates the chemical. The agency announced it would take steps to encourage industry efforts to replace BPA in baby bottles and infant formula containers, to develop alternatives, and to replace or minimize BPA in other food containers. The FDA also critiqued and called for changes to its own system for approving food-contact substances like BPA.

"It's good that the FDA finally registered concern about BPA and is advising parents on how to reduce children's exposure," said Janet Nudelman of the Breast Cancer Fund. "But we're disappointed that the FDA did not go further. We were hoping for more decisive action, especially since the science shows that there is no safe level of exposure and we know safer, cost-effective alternatives to BPA are already in use."

Fortunately, Congress is currently considering legislation, introduced by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., that would ban BPA from baby bottles, sports water bottles and reusable food containers. The bill would also ban BPA from canned foods where safe alternatives exist and require labeling where they don't. And the bill would give the FDA the authority to modernize its process for reviewing and approving food-packaging additives like BPA.

"FDA took an important first step today," said Nudelman. "Now Congress needs to take the next step to protect the American people from this highly toxic, hormonally active chemical."

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