Major Companies Stop Selling Hard-Plastic Baby Bottles in U.S

Hard Plastic Bottles
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Six major companies have agreed to stop selling hard-plastic baby bottles which contain bisphenol-A in the United States. The companies are responding to growing public concern. The companies are Playtex Products Inc., Gerber, Evenflo Co., Avent America Inc., Dr. Brown and Disney First Years.

This past year the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ruled that the amount of bisphenol-A (BPA) in containers and baby bottles did not pose a health risk. There was much criticism of that decision leading the FDA to decide to re-examine its ruling.

Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a chemical widely used to produce polycarbonate, a hard plastic. More than 2 million metric tons of BPA were produced worldwide in 2003. There is an increase in demand of 6% to 10% annually. It is used extensively in epoxy resins lining food and beverage containers and as a monomer in polycarbonate plastics in many consumer products. There is widespread and continuous exposure to BPA, mostly through food but also drinking water, dental sealants, dermal exposure, and inhalation of household dusts. More than 90% of the US population have detectable levels of BPA.

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Health officials cautious about possible ill effects believe that infants and children are at the greatest risk because of their quickly developing bodies and sensitive systems.

Parents may, as a precaution, wish to use alternatives for their bottle-fed babies. Alternatives include glass bottles and BPA-free baby bottles and sippy cups. Avoid heating formula in polycarbonate plastic bottles. If your baby is formula-fed, you can consult your pediatrician about switching to powdered infant formula.

Other choices include switching to frozen or fresh vegetables. Use glass, porcelain and stainless-steel containers, especially for hot foods and liquids.

Sources
JAMA. 2008;300(11):1303-1310. Published online September 16, 2008
FDA Statement, October 28, 2008

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