BPA prohibited in packaging materials

BPA prohibited in packaging materials

From May 2020, you must not intentionally use Bisphenol A (BPA), or other bisphenols, in materials that will be in direct contact with food stuffs. This standard comes in to effect from 1st May 2020. BPA is a chemical used to make plastics, such as containers, that come into contact with food. This includes:

  • Refillable drinks bottles/water bottles
  • Food storage containers
  • Protective coatings and linings for food and drinks cans
  • Bottle tops

BPA is found in polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. Type 7 plastics may be made from BPA. Type 3 plastics (PVC) could also contain BPA, but only in the case of flexible PVC, which is prohibited under standard 5.16.5 of these standards. Alternatives to BPA include epoxy-phenolic, modified polyester and acrylic.

The wording "intentionally use" refers to the fact that some materials are classified as BPA-NI, where 'NI' stands for "non-intentional." This classification means that, although there is no BPA added as a constituent of a lacquer, BPA may be present in the pipework, raw material packaging, processing equipment etc. and small amounts may be picked up by the finished product during production. Although you should avoid them, where possible, you can still use BPA-NI materials for the time being. We will monitor the situation with BPA-NI materials, with a view to totally eradicating BPA from all food contact materials, in due course.

You must demonstrate that you have not used BPA, or other bisphenols, in your food contact materials, for example: by having written confirmation from your suppliers. Technical data sheets (TDS), supplier declaration, or an email from the supplier can be provided to your Certification Officer.  

Refer to Soil Association standards section 5.16 and use our packaging checklist which is part of our multi and single ingredient products specifications to check if your products' packaging complies, and what information to have on file to demonstrate this. If you have any queries, please contact your Certification Officer or the Certification team at or on 0117 914 2411.