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Current Position:Home » News » Food Technology » Packaging » Topic

Whole Foods removes PFAS chemicals from its packaging

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2018-12-14  Origin: progressivegrocer.com   Views: 6
Core Tip: Whole Foods Market has removed per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals out of its food packaging.
Whole Foods Market has removed per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals out of its food packaging. This was decided after a study from Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families found that nearly two-thirds of paper takeout containers contained elevated levels of fluorine, indicating that they were likely treated with PFAS.

Researchers tested 78 food packaging samples from five grocery stores, including Whole Foods Market, finding that four out of the five analyzed takeout containers from the Austin, Texas-based food retailer were likely treated with PFAS. By contrast, 13 percent (10 out of 78 samples) of all food packaging samples and 63 percent (five out of eight) of takeout containers were likely treated with the chemicals.

“Whole Foods Market introduced compostable containers to reduce our environmental footprint, but given new concerns about the possible presence of PFAS, we have removed all prepared foods and bakery packaging highlighted in the report," Whole Foods said in an email statement when contacted by Progressive Grocer. "We’re actively working with our suppliers to find and scale new compostable packaging options.”

An article on progressivegrocer.com explains PFAS to be a class of industrial chemicals used to repel grease, water and stains in consumer products, as well as being an ingredient in some firefighting foams. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the chemicals are linked to liver damage, harm to the immune system, developmental toxicity and cancer, and can accumulate in humans and the environment.

Whole Foods is No. 8 on PG’s Super 50 list of the top grocers in the United States.

 
 
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