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European Paper Packaging industry to Phase out Printing Inks with Mineral Oils

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CEPI (Confederation of European Paper Industries), Brussels, Belgium, reports that the European paper-based packaging industry has agreed on a European-wide self-commitment to phase out the use of printing inks based on mineral oils for printing paper and board packaging, and mineral oil-based process chemicals for food contact paper and board packaging material.

CEPI points out that recent studies on mineral oils found in foodstuffs have raised concerns about consumer safety. According to these studies, it notes, traces of mineral oils migrate to food from inks found on the printed surface of packaging and in recycled packaging papers. Although no toxicological studies on the effects of human exposure to mineral oil traces currently exist, the paper-based packaging industry takes this matter very seriously and is proactively working to address any concerns, CEPI emphasizes.

Despite the absence of clear scientific and regulatory guidance, the industry has already made significant progress towards reducing the levels of mineral oils contained in its processes and products. In some cases a reduction of up to 90% in mineral oil levels has been observed over the last 24 months, CEPI says.

Additional information is available online.


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