Today the National Toxics Network joins more than 160 organisations from all over the world in this declaration of concern and call to action on plastics, packaging and human health.

The Impact of Food Contact Chemicals on Human Health: A Consensus Statement published by a group of world-renowned human and environmental health scientists raises serious concern and adds to growing evidence about exposure to harmful chemicals through their use in food packaging.

“Australia lags behind the EU and US when it comes to the regulation of industrial chemicals, including those used in food packaging with many phthalates and other endocrine disrupting chemicals used in plastic packaging that remain unassessed despite being available for use in Australia, after being grandfathered onto our Australian Industrial Chemicals Scheme (AICS) in the 80’s.” states Ms Jo Immig NTN coordinator.

“Australia is on the cusp of significant systemic change following the decision to ban waste exports to our Asia Pacific neighbours. This week the Australian government held a National Plastics Summit to respond to the global plastic pollution crisis. The success of these initiatives will depend upon the Australian government’s recognition that plastic food packaging currently represents a global human health threat. Unless immediate action is taken to address the systemic regulatory failures that have allowed toxic and hazardous substances to be used in plastic food packaging, then there is a very real likelihood that Australia’s circular economy will be poisoned and further harm caused to human health, our environment and future generations.”

“The Australian government must act swiftly to eliminate toxic and hazardous substances from plastic food packaging and require full life cycle assessments of all chemicals used in plastic production. It is well past time for the plastic packaging industry to be held accountable for their design failures and the global adverse impacts this has caused to human health and our planet.” warns Jane Bremmer NTN’s Zero Waste coordinator.

For more information: Jane Bremmer 0432 041 397 Jo Immig (02) 668 71900