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France overturns ban on BPA in export products

September 21, 2015

France overturns ban on BPA in export products

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a substance used in the manufacture of many everyday objects, including plastic bottles, food processors and metal food containers. Some scientists suspect that exposure to the chemical, for example by eating canned food, can disrupt the body’s hormone functions.

In a decision on 17 September 2015, the Constitutional Council overturned the ban on the use of BPA in food containers destined for the export market. The sale and import of the substance remains prohibited in France itself.

The Constitutional Council's decision to partially subvert the French ban on BPA has re-opened the scientific debate on the dangers of the hormone disrupter. This has been seen as a defeat for the French ecology minister, Ségolène Royal.

The court arrived at this paradoxical decision to protect the competitiveness of French businesses, as the use of the substance is still permitted in the European Union.

"The decision of the Constitutional Council is astonishing. It feels like we have gone back to the time of Chernobyl, when we were told that the radioactive cloud had stopped at the French border," MEP Michèle Rivasi (Greens) said.

Read more at EurActiv.com.

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