Lobby against toxic chemical

It is of the utmost importance that pregnant women and mothers who bottle-feed their babies are aware of the campaign to ban the toxic chemical Bisphenol A, which is used to make baby bottles and coat the inside of baby formula tins and toys.

The chemical (BPA) has been banned through legislation in Canada and products containing BPA have been removed from Canadian shop shelves. There are also moves to ban it in the US.

The Cancer Association of South Africa (Cansa) is seeking to ban BPA through legislation in South Africa.

Besides being used locally in the manufacture of baby bottles and toys, BPA is also used to coat most food and cool drink cans in South Africa.

BPA is an "endocrine disruptor", which means that it acts like a hormone in the body, affecting development and stimulating fat cells to cause obesity and cancers.

Pregnant women, babies and children are most at risk because of vulnerability of the foetus to whatever is consumed and because heating baby formula causes the chemical to leak from the plastic bottle into the liquid. Bottle-fed babies are consuming dangerous amounts of BPA in this way.

Consumers must lobby government to remove this product from our shops.

Ingela Richardson, Gonubie