Health officials, lawmakers bring awareness to dangers of PFAS

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NORTH HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — State officials are warning people about the danger of some chemicals that are widely used in food packaging.

They’re called ‘PFAS‘ and they have been associated with serious health issues.

It’s in firefighting foam, non-stick pans, microwaveable popcorn and food packaging.

“These chemicals serve a purpose in pizza boxes and in popcorn bags. They keep grease from getting on the seat of your car,” said Brian Toal, Acting Chief, Environmental Health, DPH.

They’re called PFAS. It’s short for per or polly foro alkeels and there’s about 5,000 different ones.

The CDC reports they’ve been linked to cancer, can impact hormones, and compromise immune systems.

“The health of our children and our families comes first,” said Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, Connecticut (D).

That’s why Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro says she crafted this letter to the Government Accountability Office demanding the FDA ban them and do further testing on the 62 PFAs that are currently allowed to be used in food packaging.

Back in June, the FDA acting commissioner released a statement on the issue and said they found there wasn’t any indication that these substances are a human health concern.

“My view is if that is the case why are we then not testing these products before hand, these chemicals beforehand,” said DeLauro.

“You don’t want to panic the people, but they should be aware of it. For example in Denmark, they banned all this packaging with the PFAs,” said Vasilis Vasiliou PhD, Yale School of Public Health.

Washington state has also passed a ban. It only goes into a effect though if they find a healthier alternative since it’s such an industry standard right now.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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