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The EU has strengthened its requirements for bisphenol A (BPA) in ‘food contact plastics’ and ‘food contact varnished or coated products’. The provisions in the law will become effective on September 6, 2018.

SAFEGUARDS | Hardlines NO. 021/18

SafeGuardS breakfast cereals

In October 2017, we informed you [1] that the European Union (EU) was proposing to further amend its draft legislation on bisphenol A (BPA) in ‘food contact plastics’ and ‘food contact varnished or coated materials and articles’. That draft piece of legislation would, among other things, extend the prohibition of BPA in polycarbonate (PC) infant feeding bottles to PC drinking cups or bottles for young children. 

On February 14, 2018, the EU published Regulation (EU) 2018/213 [2] to further regulate BPA in certain food contact materials and articles. This new law contains, inter alia, the following important changes:

  • Strengthening the migration limit for BPA from 0.6 mg/kg to 0.05 mg/kg in food contact plastics. This migration limit has been strengthened 12-fold
  • A completely new restriction for BPA in food contact varnished and coated materials and articles
  • A completely new prohibition for BPA in food contact varnished or coated materials and articles for infants and young children for food categories falling under Regulation (EU) 609/2013.[3]. These categories of food are:
  • Baby food
  • Follow-on formula
  • Food for special medical purposes
  • Infant formula
  • Milk-based drinks
  • Processed cereal-based food
  • Products similar to those mentioned above that are specifically for young children 

  • Requiring a declaration of conformity (DoC) for food contact varnished or coated materials and articles. The content of the DoC can be found in Annex I to Regulation (EU) 2018/213
  • Upon request by the authorities, supporting documentation such as test results or other pieces of evidence are to be made available to demonstrate compliance with the DoC

The prohibition of BPA in polycarbonate infant feeding bottles remains unchanged.

According to the latest Commission Regulation, ‘food contact plastics’ and ‘food contact varnished or coated materials and articles’ which were (lawfully) placed on the market before September 6, 2018 may remain on the market until stocks are exhausted.

Major highlights of the new law and their comparison with BPA in food contact plastics and PC infant feeding bottles are summarized in Table 1.

 

Citation Scope Requirement, unless otherwise stated, is BPA migration Effective Date
Regulation (EU) 321/2011 PC infant feeding bottles Prohibited (BPA content) May/June 2011
Regulation (EU) 10/2011 Food contact plastics ≤ 0.6 mg/kg January 2013
Regulation (EU) 2018/213 Food contact plastics ≤ 0.05 mg/kg September 6, 2018
Food contact varnished or coated products ≤ 0.05 mg/kg
Food contact varnished or coated materials and articles for young children for food categories under Regulation (EU) 609/2013 Prohibited
PC drinking cups or bottles for infants and young children Prohibited (BPA content)

Table 1

SGS technical experts have extensive knowledge and testing experience in materials and articles in contact with food. They work to ensure that your products meet the appropriate regulations for food contact materials and pave the way for compliance. From overall migration test to expert advices on emerging regulations and compliance issues and documentation review, SGS is the partner to trust. Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information or visit our website.

Next step:

Stakeholders are advised to comply with the latest requirements for BPA in food contact materials and articles for the EU market.

For enquiries, please contact:

Hing Wo Tsang
Global Information and Innovation Manager
t: +852 2774 7420

 

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