The new rules consolidate existing legislation, and make it easier and cheaper to test food contact plastics, such as packaging, for unsafe levels of chemical migration.
Food Safety Minister, Jeff Rooker, said today:
"These rules benefit consumer safety in practical terms. Testing for chemicals migration from food contact plastics has improved and will now cost less. At the end of the day, this means more testing - a real plus for consumers."
The Plastic Materials and Articles Contact in with Food Regulations 1998 (SI 1998 No.1376) consolidate existing regulations and implement EC Directive 97/48/EC of 29 July 1997 which was published in the Official Journal of the European Communities No. L222/10 of 12 August 1997. The new regulations apply in Great Britain. Separate but parallel regulations will be introduced in Northern Ireland. The 1998 regulation revoke the Plastic Materials and Articles in Contact with Food Regulations 1992 (SI 1992 No. 3145) and their three amendments (SI 1995 No. 360, SI 1996 No. 694 and SI 1996 No. 2817).