Tue July 24, 2018

“The health and well-being of infants and children are of the utmost importance. That’s just one reason why the plastics industry is so focused on ensuring that all food packaging is safe.

We’ve reviewed the AAP new policy statement, released this week, which isn’t based on any newly-released studies or data. The AAP references studies that suggest associations between exposure to food packaging materials and toxicity, but these data fail to establish causation. Correlations are not causation. For example, the AAP links BPA to obesity among low-income and minority children, without acknowledging other well-documented and plausible risk factors such as living in food deserts without access to fruits and vegetables.

Plastic food and beverage containers may be used safely in the microwave and dishwasher when indicated on the package. We agree that food should not be microwaved, cooked or reheated in its original packaging unless expressly designed for that purpose. 

Some misconceptions remain about how FDA and other authorities worldwide rigorously evaluate products. For example, in conducting safety assessments for food contact materials, FDA models consumer exposure using low body weight and high rates of food consumption so that estimates are protective of the entire population. And FDA does indeed have the authority to request additional information on authorized food-contact substances and to revoke previous approvals based on new data.

There's no silver bullet to solving some of the world's most challenging public health issues. Plastics play a role in increasing access to some of the whole fruits and vegetables that the AAP suggests we should all be eating more of, and they do so safely, helping to prevent foodborne illness and food waste. We hope we can work together to promote public health, while educating people about how our products are made and how they're tested to ensure that every plastic product is safe for its intended use.

The Plastics Industry Association welcomes the opportunity to meet with AAP to clarify these and other misconceptions.”