Bisphenol-A (BPA) has caused controversy due to its hormone-mimetic effects.
A common component of plastics, BPA was once found in many consumer products, including baby bottles.
However, due to concern over its health effects, a number of environmental health organizations now classify BPA as a human toxin, which has led to many countries banning its use in food contact products.
Unfortunately, a recent study has found that BPA is also present in a common human contact product: thermal cash register receipts.
The non-profit Environmental Working Group collected receipts from ATM’s, grocery stores, fast food restaurants, and gas stations to test them for BPA.
They found that the amount of BPA on a receipt could be up to 1,000 times the levels found in a can of food.
A wipe test found that the chemical was easily transferable to a person’s hands, where it could then be absorbed into the blood.
In order to avoid BPA exposure, consumers are advised to wash their hands after handling thermal receipts and not to let children play with receipts.