Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical substance used to produce a transparent plastic (polycarbonate) that is used in food packaging materials. BPA is also used in coatings to protect the quality of canned food and drink (the white layer on the inside of the can). BPA can get into food via migration from this type of packaging. Products such as sales receipts, building materials (paint and coatings), and medical devices can also contain BPA.
Calculations carried out by RIVM indicate that the total intake of BPA via food in the Netherlands is very limited. Even under the most unfavourable circumstances, the exposure would still be a factor of 30 times less than the tolerable daily intake (TDI). The study also clearly indicates that no single food source contributes largely to the exposure, but that all food sources each make their own 'small' contribution. The RIVM study was focused on food sources, because food is the main source of exposure to BPA for the average consumer.
This study is a follow-up of a previous study by RIVM (2016) which drew attention to new information about the TDI of BPA. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is currently re-evaluating this health limit. Pending this study, the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) asked RIVM to investigate which food sources contributed most to the exposure of BPA in the Netherlands, as well as the quantities involved.