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Exposure to BPA Lower than Previously Estimated Says EFSA

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) lowered estimates for human exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) from those previously adopted in 2006, in a draft opinion issued July 25, 2013. The lower estimates resulted from new information submitted in response to an EFSA call for data. The estimates were derived by experts on EFSA's Scientific Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids (CEF Panel), through exposure modelling and analysis of human biomonitoring data (from urine samples).


EFSA estimated that average exposure to BPA resulting from the diet of infants (up to three months) is 135 nanograms per kilogram of body weight per day (ng/kg bw/day), or 30 times lower than the previous, 2006 estimate, of 4,000 ng/kg bw/day. For adults (including women of child-bearing age), the 2013 estimate of up to 132 ng/kg bw/day is approximately 11 times lower than in 2006 of 1,500 ng/kg bw/day. For infants and toddlers (aged six months to three years), EFSA proposed that the estimated average exposure to BPA from the diet is 375 ng/kg bw/day, or less than 1% of the current Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) for BPA (0.05 milligrams/kg bw/day) established by EFSA in 2006.


EFSA's recent review of exposure to BPA covered both dietary and non-dietary sources—including thermal paper and environmental sources such as air and dust—for the first time. While diet is the major source of exposure to BPA for all population groups, exposure related to contact with thermal paper was considered the second most important source of BPA for all population groups above three years of age. Significantly, thermal paper potentially accounted for up to 15% of total exposure in some population groups.


Comments from stakeholders and interested parties on the draft exposure assessment are due by September 15, 2013. Information on how to submit comments can be found on EFSA's website.