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On March 5, 2020, the European Commission (EC) presented to the World Trade Organization (WTO) about changes and corrections for Regulation (EU) No. 10/2011 on plastics and articles intended to come into contact with food.

The proposed modification to Regulation 10/2011 includes updates to Annex I of the law. This will implement a list of substances that manufacturers are authorized to use in plastic articles and packaging intended to be in contact with food. This would constitute as the 15th amendment since the release of the Regulation.

It also introduces new general restrictions on all plastic materials based on recent scientific opinions provided by ESFA.

The list of substances and metals (Annex II of the Regulation) for which migration must be assessed is extended to include elements such as Arsenic, Cadmium, Chromium, Lead and Mercury.

Due to advances in analytical capabilities, the European Commission believes that the correct equipment is now commonly available so they propose reducing the detection limit for primary aromatic amines from the current 0.01 mg per kg of food (or food simulant) to 0.002 mg kg of food (or food simulant.)

The standardized rules for assessing global migration (conditions defined as “OM” within the Regulation) have so far proved to be too rigid and stringent for some categories of items, such as certain kitchen utensils. The proposed amendment would therefore introduce a new test condition named “OM0” that can be used to evaluate the overall migration levels from plastic articles and dishes used exclusively at room temperature or refrigeration for short periods of time.

The amendment could be enforceable by June 2020. Article 2 of the proposal still provides a transition period to allow companies to adapt to the changes. If this date is confirmed, plastic articles placed on the market before December 2020 may remain there until June 2022 or until stocks are exhausted.

Source 1, Source 2

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