Toxic Baby Bottles



    New study shows harmful chemical, bisphenol A, leaches from popular
    plastic baby bottles

    TORONTO, Feb. 7 /CNW/ - A harmful chemical found in some 90 per cent of
plastic baby bottles sold in Canada leaches into the infant formula, milk or
other liquids being drunk by babies, according to a new study released today
by Environmental Defence. The chemical, bisphenol A, is a known hormone
disruptor and is associated with adverse health effects, including breast and
prostate cancer, early puberty in girls, attention deficit and hyperactivity
disorder, and obesity.
    The study, Toxic Baby Bottles in Canada: Bisphenol A Leaching from
Popular Brands of Polycarbonate Baby Bottles, found bisphenol A leaches at
significant levels from plastic baby bottles when they are heated. Lab results
found leaching of bisphenol A with a range of 5-8 ng/ml (parts per billion)
among the bottles tested. Recent scientific research shows that bisphenol A
can be harmful at doses below the levels found in the study.
    "Clearly, we are putting our babies' health at risk by using brand name
plastic baby bottles," said Dr. Smith, Executive Director, Environmental
Defence. "The federal government must act immediately by banning bisphenol A
from baby bottles and other food and beverage containers."
    Three major brands of bottles were tested in Canada - Gerber, Avent and
Playtex. Lab results show the highest level of leaching from the Avent brand
baby bottles. Playtex brand baby bottles had the lowest level of leaching.
Significantly, levels of bisphenol A leaching increased exponentially when the
bottles were heated, with the Avent brand bottles showing the highest
concentration.
    "As parents, learning about which products are unsafe and choosing
healthy and safe alternatives is the first step towards protecting our
children and families from toxic chemicals like bisphenol A. Ultimately, we
need our provincial and federal government to step up because these toxic
products shouldn't even be on store shelves for an unsuspecting parent to pick
up and give to their children," said Monique Fabregas, a mother and founder of
GreenMom.
    Tests were also conducted on baby bottles bought in the U.S. - Avent, Dr.
Brown, Evenflo and Disney. The results were similar as those of bottles bought
in Canada, with Dr. Brown bottles showing the highest concentration of
bisphenol A after the bottles were heated.
    Health Canada is currently conducting a safety review of bisphenol A as
part of the federal government's Chemicals Management Plan, and will recommend
whether to regulate the chemical in the coming months. In Ontario, the
McGuinty government is creating an expert panel to review toxic chemicals,
starting with bisphenol A, with a view to introducing stricter regulations to
protect Ontarians' health. Environmental Defence is calling for a ban on the
use of bisphenol A in baby bottles, reusable water bottles and all other food
and beverage containers.
    "With so many scientific studies showing harm in low doses, there's no
excuse for failing to act to protect children's health," said Dr. Kapil
Khatter, Pollution Policy Advisor for Environmental Defence. "The absence of
regulation is needlessly putting children's health at risk."
    Environmental Defence is also encouraging retailers to stop selling
products that contain bisphenol A. Both Mountain Equipment Co-op and Lululemon
recently chose to take bisphenol A products off their shelves. Parents can
take action immediately to protect their children's health by choosing safer
alternatives, including plastic baby bottles made without bisphenol A, or
glass baby bottles. For further tips, parents can download the Toxic Nation
Guide to Toxic Baby Bottles from Environmental Defence's Toxic Nation web site
- www.toxicnation.ca.
    The full study, Toxic Baby Bottles in Canada: Bisphenol A Leaching from
Popular Brands of Polycarbonate Baby Bottles, is available to download for
free on the Toxic Nation web site - www.toxicnation.ca.

    About Environmental Defence (www.environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental
Defence protects the environment and human health. We research. We educate. We
go to court when we have to. All in order to ensure clean air, safe food and
thriving ecosystems. Nationwide.





For further information:

For further information: or to arrange interviews, please contact:
Jennifer Foulds, Environmental Defence, (416) 323-9521 ext. 232, (647)
280-9521 (cell)

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