An Unlikely Health Threat: Paper Receipts?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010 2 Comments

 Only if it's BPA-free tyvm...

Serious. I'm waiting patiently for the San Francisco Board of Supervisors to outlaw paper receipts entirely. In the meantime, California legislators have been trying for years to keep BPA out of our babies' mouths (the latest attempt is SB 797) and the FDA has expressed some concerns that even "safe" levels of BPA (found in common products like CDs and automobile parts) can still cause development issues in infant brains, early onset of puberty in children, altered immune function, hyperactivity or increased aggressiveness, decreased sperm production and various types of cancer.

But paper receipts? Really?

As lawmakers and health experts wrestle over whether a controversial chemical, bisphenol-A, should be banned from food and beverage containers, a new analysis by an environmental group suggests Americans are being exposed to BPA through another, surprising route: paper receipts.

The Environmental Working Group found BPA on 40 percent of the receipts it collected from supermarkets, automated teller machines, gas stations and chain stores. In some cases, the total amount of BPA on the receipt was 1,000 times the amount found in the epoxy lining of a can of food, another controversial use of the chemical.

Sonya Lunder, a senior analyst with the environmental group, says BPA's prevalence on receipts could help explain why the chemical can be detected in the urine of an estimated 93 percent of Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"We've come across potentially major sources of BPA right here in our daily lives," Lunder said. "When you're carrying around a receipt in your wallet for months while you intend to return something, you could be shedding BPA into your home, into your environment. If you throw a receipt into a bag of food, and it's lying there against an apple, or you shove a receipt into your bag next to a baby pacifier, you could be getting all kinds of exposure and not realize it."
See, I'm a big huge undercover gaywad and store receipts going back years just to commemorate certain times in my life that I'd like to remember. It's not like I roll around in them with my 7 year old but still, paper receipts?!

Jr Deputy Accountant

Some say he’s half man half fish, others say he’s more of a seventy/thirty split. Either way he’s a fishy bastard.


Anonymous said...

Well now at least we know not to feed our receipts to our kids! I am glad they let me know, guess it is back to cat food for them.

Anonymous said...

Checkout clerks unite! Class action lawsuit for work environment that robbed you of your health and your kids' health. Think how many receipts you have handled! We will sue the stores, the cash register companies, the paper & ink producers and even the foresters who gathered the trees for the paper and the trucking companies that brought those receipts to you.

Call the law firm of Snake, Bat, Slug & Hyena today @ 1-800-555-1111 xt BR549