EU REACH: Bisphenol A Restriction In Thermal Paper

On December 13, 2016, the European Commission has published Regulation (EU) 2016/2235 in Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) to amend EU REACH Annex XVII by creating a new entry 66 to include a new restriction of Bisphenol A (BPA) in thermal paper. 

Thermal paper containing equal to or greater than 0.02% by weight of Bisphenol A shall not be placed on the EU market after January 2, 2020.

According to the Regulation, thermal paper is composed of a base paper coated with at least one coating which may contain Bisphenol A. The coating changes colour when exposed to heat, allowing the printed characters to appear. Therefore, the workers (primarily cashiers), especially the unborn children of pregnant workers and consumers are at risk of the exposure to Bisphenol A by handling thermal paper receipts.

In Annex XVII to Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006, the following new entry is added: 

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