Bisphenol-A (BPA), the endocrine-disrupting chemical in plastics has been problematic for the experts for at least a decade. Studies on the product found in a myriad of plastic
food containers and water bottles has produced conflicting conclusion and have left public health officials asking: Is BPA safe?
Canada has classified it as a toxic substance and some European countries have banned it in certain products meant for children, like baby bottles.
The chemical is ever-present in our packaging and plastic products, and probably every American is exposed to it. A National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences study found that 93% of urine samples from American children under the age of 6 contained BPA. It is one of a class of toxicants that mimics the hormone estrogen, BPA has been linked to the increased risk of cancers, including breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men, obesity, diabetes and even to the earlier onset of puberty in girls.
While the larger question of BPA safety remains unanswered, the use of the compound is certainly on the rise worldwide. BPA production, already at 2 million tons per year globally, is projected to grow by 6% to 10% per year.