The use of polyvinyl chloride food cling film security risks

From September 1, new national standards for "food plastic self-adhesive plastic wrap" will be formally implemented. In addition to polyethylene cling film, polyvinyl chloride and polyvinylidene chloride food wrap are included in the national standard for the first time. The new standard not only sets clear requirements for the use of materials and methods for the use of various types of cling film, but also requires a clear indication of the mode of use, heating method, maximum heat-resistant temperature and warning language.

The use of PVC cling film to prevent harm to human health At present, the market for food preservation cling film from the raw materials divided into three main categories: the first category is polyethylene (PE or LDPE), mainly used for fruits, vegetables, pork and other students Fresh food packaging; the second category is polyvinylidene chloride (PVDC), mainly used for the packaging of meat cooked food; the third category is polyvinyl chloride (PVC), can be used for food packaging. From the perspective of raw materials, polyethylene and polyvinylidene chloride plastic wrap are relatively safe to the human body, while the use of PVC cling film has some potential safety hazards.

Professor Dong Jinshi, executive vice president and secretary-general of the International Food Packaging Association pointed out that in order to increase the viscosity, transparency and elasticity, PVC cling film has added about 35% plasticizer to the manufacturing process, while the plasticizer contains Di-isocyanate diacetate (DE-HA), this substance has a great destructive effect on the human endocrine system, can disrupt the body's hormone metabolism, but also easily penetrated into food, especially high-fat foods, and supermarkets Cooked foods are mostly high-fat foods. After prolonged wrapping, the oils in the food can easily dissolve the harmful substances in the plastic wrap. When it is heated, ethylhexylamine is accelerated to be released into the food. After the food is eaten, it causes the woman to develop breast cancer, newborn birth defects, and men. The reduced number of sperm can also cause mental illness.

As to whether the PVC cling film has a carcinogenic effect, there is currently a lot of controversy in the academic community. One faction expert believes that there are two kinds of carcinogenic potential in polyvinyl chloride cling film: First, polyvinyl chloride monomer (VCM) is nontoxic in the range of 1 PPM (one millionth) but exceeds this limit. There is the possibility of carcinogenicity; second is the addition of di-iso-octyl adipate in PVC cling film, which can easily exude when exposed to high temperature or foods containing oil, which may cause cancer to the human body. Another faction expert believes that there is no direct evidence that PVC cling film is carcinogenic. The key is whether it can cause cancer under any conditions. Before accurate data can be verified, it cannot be said in general terms that the cling film can cause cancer. .

The new national standard requires that the plastic wrap company labels warnings. Dong Jinshi said that the development of food plastic wrap materials in developed countries has gone through three stages, from vinylidene chloride to polyvinyl chloride, to polyethylene. In the UK more than a decade ago, it was suspected that diisooctyl adipate in PVC cling film might be harmful to the human body, and the use of such cling film was forbidden. The European Union has long since banned polyvinyl chloride as a food packaging material. In 2000 and April 2009, Japan and South Korea also banned the use of PVC cling film. Such companies in the two countries have sold a large quantity of PVC cling film to China, and some companies have also established production bases in China. The United States, Singapore and other countries have also completely banned PVC packaging materials.

In 1995, China began to use PVC food cling film, the use of only a few tons, since then the amount of use continued to grow rapidly in recent years, the annual use of more than 15,000 tons. After the toxic plastic wrap in 2005, the plastic wrap sold by major supermarkets in the country was basically polyethylene plastic wrap without plasticizers, but some food companies and supermarkets still use PVC cling film. The current use of PVC cling film is mainly concentrated in three places: food packaging for meat, cooked foods, vegetables, fruits, etc. used in certain supermarkets; product packaging used by certain food processing companies; and semi-finished food packaging used in certain restaurants. .

In August 1988, the Ministry of Health promulgated the Hygienic Standard for Polyvinyl Chloride Molded Products for Food Packaging, which was mainly formulated for the national standards for food containers such as lunch boxes and packaging containers. As there was no plastic wrap this product, it was not included. In 1989, China issued the "national standard for polyethylene self-adhesive cling film". It applies only to polyethylene cling film and does not include polyvinyl chloride and polyvinylidene chloride. Therefore, a new national standard is urgently required.

On September 1, the forthcoming National Standard for "Food Plastics Self-adhesive Film" will not only clearly specify the types of cling film, use materials, and additives, but also strictly limit the use of various cling film functions. According to the requirements of the new national standard, the plastic wrap that can be used for packaging foods must be marked with the word “food”; PVC cling film is only suitable for packaging fresh foods and should be labeled “Can't touch foods with fats” and “Can't be heated by microwave ovens. Warning language such as “not allowed to be used at high temperatures”; other types of cling film, if it can be used for microwave heating, should indicate “can be used in the microwave oven”, heating method and maximum heat-resistant temperature.

What should you watch out for when using food cling film?

The main function of food cling film is to preserve water, preserve quality and protect nutrition, with moderate oxygen permeability and moisture impermeability to regulate the oxygen content and moisture content of foods. In general, foods that use cling film correctly can be kept at room temperature for about a week.

Dong Jinshi reminded consumers that cooked foods, hot foods, and foods containing oils should not be stored in cling film, because the chemical components contained in cling film are easily dissolved in foods. If you cover ceramic wrap, glass, etc., on top of the plastic wrap, try not to fill it so that the cling film does not touch the food. When using a microwave wrap to heat the food, several small holes should be made in the plastic wrap covering the dish to avoid bursting. The highest heat-resistant temperature of the various plastic wraps is different, and some are about 10°C. When the temperature in the microwave oven is high, it will reach about 110°C. Consumers must strictly follow the marked temperature on the cling film packaging or choose heat resistance. Better cling film. Although the polyethylene cling film widely used at present does not contain plasticizers, it is a plastic product in the end. Prolonged heating will surely cause chemical substances to dissolve into the food. It is better not to use cling film at high temperatures.

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