Testimony in Support of LD 1050
April 10, 2013
Good afternoon Senator Boyle, Representative Welsh and members of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee. My name is Beth Ahearn and I am the political director of Maine Conservation Voters (MCV). MCV’s mission is to make protection of Maine’s environment a political priority. I am testifying in support of LD 1050, An Act to Require Labeling of Food Packaging that Contains Bisphenol A.
MCV supports LD 1050 because consumers have the right to be informed about whether food packaging contains BPA. Consumers assume that if food is on the shelf, that it is safe. Unfortunately, this is not true. BPA is used to line the inside of metal cans and lids and has contaminated food and beverages when it leaches out of the epoxy resin linings. It has been banned from baby bottles and sippy cups and the BEP decided to ban it from infant formulas and baby food. Hopefully, you will as well. While these are good steps, we can do more to equip people with information they need to make choices that are right for their families.
Why should we want to know if BPA is present in food packaging? Because BPA harms the developing brains of young children and has been linked diabetes, heart disease, behavior problems and breast and prostate cancer. In 2008, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services expressed formal concern that BPA may harm the brain and prostate gland in and alter the behavior of infants and children at the current levels of exposure.
In summary, BPA is currently found in much food packaging. This packaging should be labeled so that people have the information they need to protect their families from exposure to this substance should they choose to.