Food safety

Project to review toxicological and health aspects of Bisphenol A

Project background

Bisphenol A
Bisphenol A

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a widely used chemical in polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins, also used in food contact materials, leading to potential consumer exposure through food. A very large number of studies on the toxicity and endocrine activity of BPA in animals have been published. There have been considerable discrepancies in outcome among these studies, both with respect to the nature of the effects observed and, where reported, the levels at which they occur. This has led to controversy in the scientific community about the safety of BPA and has resulted in different risk management decisions taken by national authorities. The issue has also received much attention in the media and in the general public.

Joint FAO/WHO expert meeting

In the light of these uncertainties about the possibility of adverse human health effects at low doses of BPA, especially on reproduction, the nervous system and on behavioural development, and considering the relatively higher exposure of very young children compared with adults, FAO and WHO jointly organized an ad hoc expert meeting to assess the safety of BPA.

The final report of the expert meeting including a brief report of the stakeholder meeting, as well as more detailed background papers, are all accessible from this website.