(NaturalNews) Beginning in March 2011, the European Union (EU) will outlaw the manufacture and sale of baby bottles and containers made with bisphenol-A (BPA), a plastics chemical linked to endocrine disruption, developmental disorders, and other illnesses. The decision came after a series of new studies were released that highlight the dangers of the chemical, especially in babies.
"There were areas of uncertainty, deriving from new studies, which showed that BPA might have an effect on development, immune response and tumor promotion," explained John Dalli, European Commissioner of Health and Consumer Policy. "The decision ... is good news for European parents who can be sure that as of mid-2011 plastic infant feeding bottles will not include BPA."
Currently in the U.S., there are no national restrictions on BPA use. Some individual cities and counties, however, have banned baby products that contain it -- including the city of Chicago and Suffolk County, New York. And Canadian Health Minister Tony Clement also declared BPA to be toxic and banned it from baby bottles back in 2008, making Canada the first nation to officially ban the chemical from baby containers (http://www.naturalnews.com/029011_BPA_plasti...).
The biggest concern with BPA is the way it can slowly but continually leach from containers into food and drinks. And because the chemical is known to mimic estrogen, it can exhibit a "gender-bender" effect when consumed, especially in developing children whose hormonal balance is highly sensitive to outside influences.
"When you put liquids into a bottle -- particularly hot liquids or liquids containing fatty liquids -- it leaches out of the plastic," explained Belinda Phipps, chief executive of the U.K. charity National Childbirth Trust, to BBC News. "And particularly as the bottle gets older and it gets more scratched, more and more leaches out and into the liquid."