ARCHIVED - Survey of Bisphenol A in Canned Liquid Infant Formula Products

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Health Canada, 2008.

Cat.: H164-79/2008E-PDF
ISBN: 978-0-662-48684-8


Table of Contents

Background

Bisphenol A (BPA) is the common name for 2,2-(4,4'-dihydroxydiphenyl)propane, 4,4'-isopropyllidenediphenol, or 2,2'-bis(4-hydroxyphenyl)propane. It is used as an intermediate in the production of epoxy resins, and epoxy resins are used in the internal coating for food and beverage cans to protect the food from direct contact with metal. BPA can migrate from cans with epoxy coating into foods, especially at elevated temperatures (for example, for hot-fill or heat-processed canned foods). BPA is one of the 23000 chemical substances on the CEPA (Canadian Environmental Protection Act) domestic substance list (DSL) identified for further evaluation under government of Canada's chemical management plan (CMP). As part of this evaluation process for BPA, an exposure assessment needs to be conducted in order to determine infant exposures to BPA due to consumption of canned liquid infant formula products. In this survey, samples of 21 canned liquid infant formula products of various brands were analysed for BPA using a method with a quantification limit as low as 0.5 ng g-1, and the results were used to estimate dietary intakes of BPA for infants in different age groups.

Sampling Plan and Analytical Methodology

A minimum of 3 cans (with the same lot number) of each of the 21 liquid infant formula products were purchased in October 2007 in a local grocery store in Ottawa. These products covered 8 brands from 4 companies. Among the 21 products, 17 products were milk based and 4 were soya based; 18 were concentrated and 3 were ready to use. All samples were stored at room temperature before analysis.

The samples were analysed by a gas chromatography-mass spectrometry method after solid phase extraction and derivatization with acetic anhydride.

Notes:

  • This initial sampling will be expanded to include other canned infant formula products sold in Canada. As new data is generated, Health Canada will update the survey results accordingly.
  • Canned infant formula samples were tested as consumed.
  • Samples represent a "snapshot" of the market and do not represent market share. Differences between brands do not necessarily reflect differences in consumer exposure to BPA. The results shown in Table 1 are exploratory and should not be used to indicate the distribution of bisphenol A in canned infant formula products or as indices of good product choices for consumers

BPA Levels in Canned Liquid Infant Formula Products

Table 1 summarizes the levels of BPA determined in samples of the canned liquid infant formula products. BPA was detected in all 21 products. Concentrations of BPA ranged from 2.27 to 10.2 ng g-1 with an average of 5.12 ng g-1, well below the specific migration limit of 0.6 mg g-1 set by the EC Directive for BPA in food or food stimulant.

Health Significance of the Survey Results

The levels of BPA detected in canned liquid infant formula available for sale in Canada are low. In March 2008, Health Canada's Food Directorate completed a Health Risk Assessment of BPA from food packaging applications which used the results of this survey to determine exposure estimates to BPA. Health Canada's Food Directorate has concluded that:

  • The current dietary exposure to BPA through food packaging is not expected to pose a health risk to the general population, including newborns and young children.
    • This conclusion has been re-affirmed by health agencies in other countries, including notably the United States, Europe and Japan.
  • In view of uncertainties related to datasets on possible neurodevelopmental and behavioural effects that BPA may have in experimental animals, Health Canada has recommended that precaution be exerted on products consumed by the sensitive subset of the population, i.e. infants and newborns, by applying the ALARA (as low as reasonably achievable) principle to reduce their exposure to BPA through food packaging applications." - Replace the Table, including its title and footnotes, with the following:
Table 1: Concentrations (ng g -1) of BPA in canned liquid infant formula products as consumed Table 1 footnote +
Company Brand Product Type Infant age
(months)
BPA concentration
(ng g-1)

Table 1 footnotes

Table 1 footnote +

Samples represent a "snapshot" of the market and do not represent market share.  Differences between brands do not necessarily reflect differences in consumer exposure to BPA.  The results shown in the table are exploratory and should not be used to indicate the distribution of bisphenol A in canned infant formula products or as indices of good product choices for consumers.

Return to table 1 footnote + referrer

Abbott Isomil Isomil Advance Concentrate Soya Infant Formula with Omega-3 and Omega-6 Soya 0 - 12 4.47
Isomil Infant Formula with Soya for Allergy and Sensitivity to Milk Protein Soya 0 - 12 3.18
Similac Similac Advance with Omega-3 Omega-6 Infant Formula with Iron with Eye Q Nutrition System Milk 0 - 12 4.25
Similac Advance Lactose Free Concentrate Infant Formula Milk 0 - 12 4.89
Similac Advance with Omega-3 and Omega-6, Calcium enriched, Iron fortified Infant Formula Milk 6 - 18 5.12
Similac Advance Regular Concentrate Infant Formula Milk 0 - 12 4.33
Similac Advance Concentrate Infant Formula with Iron Milk 6 - 18 4.08
Loblaws Inc. President's Choice President's Choice Infant Formula Concentrate with Iron + Omega-3 and Omega-6 Milk 0 - 12 1.87
President's Choice Soya Infant Formula Concentrate Plus Omega-3 and Omega-6 with Iron Soya 0 - 12 2.50
President's Choice Infant Formula Concentrate Milk 0 - 12 1.60
Mead Johnson Nutritionals Enfapro Enfapro Calcium Enriched Concentrate Infant Formula Milk 6 and up 1.71
Enfamil Enfamil with Iron Fortified Infant Formula Milk 0 - 12 2.72
Enfamil A+ with LIPIL our blend of Omega-3 & Omega-6. Our closest formula to breast milk Infant Formula Iron Fortified Milk 0 - 12 2.19
Enfamil Lower Iron than other Enfamil brands Concentrate Infant Formula Milk 0 - 12 2.43
Enfagrow Enfagrow Toddler Nutrition High in Iron and Calcium Nutritional Supplement Milk 12 and up 5.44
Nestle Nestle Nestle Alsoy Iron Fortified Soy Infant Formula Lactose Free and Vegetarian Omega-3 Omega-6 Soya 0 - 12 1.35
Nestle Follow-Up Transition Iron Fortified Infant Formula Calcium Enriched Milk 6 - 18 1.14
Nestle Good Start 2 Iron Fortified with Added Calcium with Omega-3 Omega-6 Easier to Digest Infant Formula with Whole whey protein partially hydrolyzed by an exclusive process Milk 6 - 18 1.14
Nestle Good Start Iron Fortified with Omega-3 Omega-6 Easier to Digest Infant Formula Whole whey protein partially hydrolyzed by an exclusive process Milk 0 - 12 1.15
Nestle Good Start Iron Fortified Infant Formula with Whole whey protein partially hydrolyzed by an exclusive process Milk 0 - 12 1.16
Ross Canada PediaSure PediaSure Complete Nutrition for Kids Milk 12 and up 3.91
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