Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Ban on baby bottle chemical demanded

Scientists have rounded on the Government for refusing to take action on a controversial chemical widely used in baby bottles — even though other countries have begun bringing in their own bans.

Denmark has become the first European country to forbid the use of bisphenol A (BPA) in any food containers for young children, amid growing scientific evidence which suggests the chemical could inhibit brain development and lead to serious health issues.

Most mainstream baby bottle manufacturers have already begun producing BPA-free lines, but an investigation has revealed how leading high-street retailers, including Boots and Mothercare, were still selling off older bottles containing the chemical.

Boots has since said it will phase out BPA bottles within “a couple of weeks” but Mothercare will continue to sell them until early August.

The Government is resisting any sort of ban and continues to insist that BPA poses no threat to public health.

Canada and three states in the US have already forbidden the chemical in baby products.

Scientists and cancer specialists last night called on Britain to follow Denmark and Canada's lead by bringing in a temporary ban on baby bottles which contain BPA.

Clare Dimmer, chair of trustees at Breast Cancer UK, said: “The UK's present position is incompatible with the growing consensus within the scientific community and leaves babies and infants exposed to unnecessary health risks that could be dealt with quite simply and at little or no cost to business.”

Vyvyan Howard, professor of bioimaging at the University of Ulster said: “The fact that Denmark has taken this decision reinforces what a growing number of scientists have been saying — that the evidence against BPA and its potential health risks on the very young is really quite strong.”

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