How healthy is food packaging?
From your foodâ€™s perspective, packaging mostly is plastic: milk cartons, beer cans, and paper cups all have a plastic-type lining in direct food contact. Today there is increasing concern about the health aspects of plastic food packaging because it leaches low-levels of chemicals into food.
In the past, low-levels have been associated with low risk. But recent scientific findings indicate that this estimation may not correctly reflect actual risk:
- Chemicals like BPA that are endocrine disrupters can affect and interfere with our hormones at low levels.
- Mixtures of endocrine disrupting chemicals can act additively to cause effects, even if the individual chemicals are present at low levels.
- When endocrine disrupting chemicals reach the fetus or developing child they can cause changes that can lead to chronic disease later in life. The early stages of developing life are particularly vulnerable to endocrine disrupting chemicals, even at low doses.
For these reasons more and more scientists are concerned about endocrine disrupting chemicals. Plastic-type materials, like the ones used in food packaging, are made with several different endocrine disrupting chemicals.
These short movie clips give an introduction to new toxicology concepts beyond â€śthe dose makes the poisonâ€ť and their relevance for food packaging. All materials presented in the films are taken from peer-reviewed scientific publications (available upon request from Emhart Glass).