IPEN International Pollutants Elimination Network

Plastic Waste Poisoning Food and Threatening Communities in Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe and Latin America

Plastics and food packaging contain chemical contaminants from manufacturing along with many additives to make them inflammable, more flexible, grease-resistant, or sterile, as well as other substances to create many other properties. Many of these additives are toxic and they leak from products during use and can be released during recycling and from recycled products.

This study focuses on persistent organic pollutants (POPs), whose releases are closely related to plastic wastes. The POPs include additives in the plastic as such, as well as unintentionally produced POPs (UPOPs) generated mostly by burning, incineration and/or other thermal treatment of plastics.

Four samples from this study are among the ten highest ever measured levels of chlorinated dioxins in chicken eggs globally.

For greater detail, please see the full-length version of this report Plastic waste disposal leads to contamination of the food chain, linked below.

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