Is that stuff on the inside of drink cans doing us all harm?

It’s called BPA and though there’s no hard evidence against it, lots of people are worried

Benenden

Bisphenol A, often known as BPA, is a chemical compound used to make protective coatings and linings for food and drink cans. There have been a lot of health scare stories recently about the possible negative effects of BPA on our bodies, but does the science stack up?

Traces of BPA

The Food Standards Agency says: ‘Minute amounts of BPA can transfer from packaging into food and drinks. However, independent experts have advised that these levels of exposure are not considered
to be harmful.’

Hormonal imbalance

BPA does have the potential to interact with our hormonal systems, but research is still being done. Some critics claim it could cause adverse effects on the brain, behaviour and prostate glands of foetuses, infants and young children.

The evidence

The European Food Standards Agency says there is no credible evidence but it is monitoring continuing research and, in response to current uncertainties around BPA, it has reduced the official level of ‘tolerable daily intake’.