“Plastics packaging is safe,” is the message from the British Plastics Federation in response to an article published by the 'The Guardian' newspaper, 'Chemicals leaching into food from packaging raise safety concerns' (19th February 2014).
“The Guardian article followed a familiar pattern,” said Philip Law, the BPFF's Director General Designate. “The article cited a paper from a learned journal warning of long term damage of exposure to synthetics and urging further research. It was an alarmist piece and once again the views on the industry were not solicited.
“A host of chemicals were conveniently swept up under the generic label of ‘synthetics' with no consideration for their very different, individual profiles. There was no suggestion that some of the chemicals commonly regarded as 'synthetics' are actually naturally incurring. Strangely, no reference was made to the news that this week the European Commission had complete a review of two phthalates and concluded that they posed no risk to consumers,” Law continued.
The BPF said it the stringency of EU and national regulations dictating the standards of plastics used for food packaging was indicative of how closely the industry is monitored. “Not only is plastics packaging safe, public health benefits significantly from it,” it said. The Federation also highlighted developments in plastic packaging over the last 50 years, citing its contribution to “vast improvements in food hygiene” as well as healthcare applications.