REACH and Food Contact Regulations for Plastics: Substances listed in the REACH candidate list can be used to manufacture Plastic Food Contact Materials and Articles

This document compares and contrasts two key regulations for European manufacturers of polymers used in the manufacture of plastics materials and articles, namely the REACH regulation 1 and the regulations on food contact materials and plastic materials and articles intended to come into contact with food 2,3. Companies manufacturing and selling products on the European market are required to submit extensive dossiers to various European authorities and to meet a number of legal obligations to demonstrate safe use before a substance is approved.

REACH applies to all chemical manufacturers and importers. The obligations apply to all potential uses and related exposure routes of all chemical substances. In contrast, safety assessments for food contact substances are specifically aimed at food consumption to ensure that substances used in food contact applications are not transferred to food at levels that pose a risk to human health.