Safeway will stop selling plastic baby bottles made with Bisphenol-A, the controversial chemical that mimics estrogen and has been linked to a range of health problems.
The nation's third-largest supermarket chain, Safeway has 1,775 stores in the U.S. and Canada. Its announcement comes just days after Canada announced it would ban the use of the chemical in baby bottles. The Food and Drug Administration has taken no action to restrict use of the chemical in the U.S., and has instead stood by its safety while bebaby bottleing criticized for relying on industry-backed studies instead of a growing body of independent and government research. The National Toxicology Program, a U.S. agency, declared its concern over the health safety of the chemical just weeks ago.
Other retailers and manufacturers to announce voluntary bans on the use of Bisphenol-A in certain products include Whole Foods, Walmart, Toys-R-Us, Nalgene and Camelbak.
"Once again, we have a major retailer setting stringent public health safety standards in an effort to reduce babies' exposure to this toxic chemical," said Sonya Lunder, a seniro scientist at the nonprofit watchdog Environmental Working Group. "This is a job that should be done by the FDA. Safeway's action is another blow to the federal Food and Drug Administration's increasingly isolated position that a toxic sex hormone is somehow safe in baby products."
Bisphenol-A is found in a number of other products, including the lining of cans and baby formula containers.
The Natural Resources Defense Council also today petitioned the FDA to ban Bisphenol-A in food packaging.
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.