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Malaysia Proposes Limits in Food for Metals from Food-Contact Plastics

Malaysia has notified the World Trade Organizations of a proposed Draft New Regulation 27B, Food Regulations 1985 (Plastic materials and articles). The draft regulation establishes maximum levels of migration from plastic materials and articles to food of certain metals, as well as provides specific migration limits for a number of other substances used in plastic materials and articles, including acrylonitrile, vinyl chloride, formaldehyde, and others. It also states that plastic food-contact materials and articles shall be tested in accordance with Malaysia Standard MS 2234 (Plastic Materials and Articles Intended to Come into Contact with Food).

As way of background, food packaging materials in Malaysia are governed by the Food Act of 1983. Part VI of the Food Regulations of 1985, which implement the Food Act, sets forth the general requirements for the safe packaging of food, and prohibits food packaging from rendering food injurious to human health or contributing to its deterioration. The Food Regulations include specific prohibitions on the use of packaging that imparts lead, antimony, arsenic, cadmium, or other toxic substances to food.

For more information on the regulation of food packaging materials in Malaysia, see the article, The Regulation of Food Packaging in the Pacific Rim.