New draft EU regulation on BPA in varnishes and coatings

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a common initial material used in the form of epoxy resins for interior coatings of spray cans and aluminium tubes. However, the scope of the EU Plastics Regulation 10/2011 does not currently cover paints and coatings. To rectify this, the European Commission published the draft regulation “Bisphenol A in varnishes and coatings and plastics intended to come into contact with food” at the end of August 2017.

Bisphenol A in food contact materials

The draft Regulation establishes a new specific migration limit of 0.05 mg/kg food for bisphenol A (BPA). This will be the maximum migration limit for varnishes and coatings applied to materials and products that come into contact with food. The current migration limit is 0.6 mg/kg.

For some products, however, the use of BPA is already completely prohibited. For example, in Europe baby bottles based on polycarbonate - which is made from BPA - may no longer be used. In France, except for some large containers, the use of BPA is in general no longer permitted in all food contact materials.

Packaging materials for topic and oral medicinal products

In addition to manufacturers of food contact materials, pharmaceutical manufacturers are also affected by these changes, as the draft also has an indirect impact on packaging materials for oral and topical medicinal products. According to the European guideline for plastic packaging materials, this type of packaging material must also comply in accordance with the food regulations.