The FPA Response to the US Fast Food Packaging Study

The FPA Response to the US Fast Food Packaging Study

Response to Packaging News – 2 February 2017

 Executive Director Martin Kersh comments:

“The Silent Spring Institute is a highly regarded organisation with an outstandingly well qualified team so any research they publish will, quite rightly, achieve wide coverage. Once you get past the sensational headlines the researchers correctly provide a number of notes of caution particularly “It’s really difficult to make that link between what we were finding in the packaging, and how that might affect someone’s health, PFASs are a complex category.”

PN FPA Nottingham 150115. Packaging News. Foodservice Packaging Association Seminar 15th January 2015 at East Midlands Conference Centre, University of Nottingham. FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT David Berman for Metropolis Business Publishing. These images are copyright. Permission must be sought PRIOR to use

They are a complex area and most of the reports omit to say that there are two types of PFASs -long chain which have been phased out and short chain which are newer chemicals, have been rigorously reviewed by the US Food and Drug Administration and found to be safe. Foodservice packaging uses either food safe proven short chain fluorochemicals or newer barrier coatings again proven to be food safe.


“For packaging that requires a barrier coating it is widely known that short chain fluorochemicals are indeed used, they are food safe. We therefore wonder that while researchers did indeed find PFASs they did not dig deeper to identify whether these are long or short chain. They therefore proved the presence of PFASs which should be no surprise but did not identify the type and whether what they found represented a risk to the public. The popular media has jumped the gun and we have to view this as another example of the media undermining packaging with unsubstantiated stories.

“We of course, support all investigations into the content of packaging and in the event a risk is proven by the Food Standards Agency then we would equally support calls to withdraw that material whatever the application. The protection of the public’s health is paramount and reputable packaging is proven to do this so we therefore ask the Food Standards Agency to provide a clear statement.

“There is of course packaging that enters the EU by less reputable organisations that does not carry full documentation to prove it is 100% food safe. The FPA deplores this packaging and urges the Government to ensure stricter checks at the borders are made. The public can have full confidence that packaging sourced by foodservice retailers and operators from reputable suppliers is completely safe.”

Ends                                                                                                                                                      2 February  2017

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: Martin Kersh – Foodservice Packaging Association –             0207 9938343