Science Express - Hard-Plastic Bottles – Are They Harming Our Health? - Ian Shaw 

3 July 2008, 

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This podcast was recorded on 3 July 2008.

It’s commonplace in New Zealand to reuse plastic bottles, whether it’s by bottle- feeding your baby, or by drinking from a water bottle while you exercise. Reusing containers not only helps save the environment, but saves you money too.

However, in recent times, research has been presented which calls into question the safety of hard-plastic bottles. Repeated reuse of such bottles – which age through normal wear and tear and while being washed – increases the chance that chemicals will leak out of the tiny cracks and crevices that develop in the plastic over time.

In some circumstances, chemicals in food packaging can migrate into the food product. The chemical Bisphenol A, or BPA, has been found to leach from some hard-plastic bottles into babies' milk or formula.

What is Bisphenol A? What other everyday products is it used in, and could these products be harmful to our health? Are there safe alternatives? Join us to explore this research.

Featuring Professor Ian Shaw (Canterbury University). Professor Ian Shaw is a Toxicologist, a consultant to the New Zealand Food Safety Authority, and Pro Vice-Chancellor (Science) at the University of Canterbury.

Proudly Supported by GNS Science and the Royal Society of New Zealand, Wellington Branch.

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