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All About IBFAN

Research studies point to a growing list of potentially harmful substances that have been measured in formula, and to increasing levels of formula contamination by arsenic, aluminium, toxic metals and certain trace elements. These result from the chemical contamination of the environment of our planet - the air we breathe, the soil we cultivate and the water we use. IBFAN is campaigning for full disclosure of all the ingredients in baby formulas, milks and foods, including Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals as well as toxic elements such as aluminium and arsenic. Manufacturers must indicate the levels of contamination of formulas and foods by these toxic substances, so that parents, care-givers and health professionals can take informed decisions about infant feeding, free from commercial promotion based on distortion or omission of vital information.



  • A study in the USA analysed  500 formulas and baby food products from 60 brands and screened them for over 130 toxins. The researchers measured alarming levels of arsenic, cadmium, lead and acrylamide: 65% of products tested positive for arsenic, 58% for cadmium, 36% for lead,  and 10% for acrylamide. All of these toxic substances are linked to developmental defects and serious health conditions and thus pose potential dangers for developing infants.
    Bisphenol A, BPA, acts as a hormone disruptor with negative effects on fertility and human reproduction ; it  was found in 60% of products claiming to be ‘BPA free’. See
  • US manufacturers claim that they adhere to strict safety standards, but this is contradicted by the screening results. For a list of the brands and products See

  • High levels of arsenic found in baby formulas - but breastfeeding protects infants from exposure to arsenic: Arsenic is a poisonous element with multiple adverse effects on human bodies:  “Arsenic is a carcinogen that can also affect the cardiac, respiratory, neurological and immune systems. Children have higher dietary arsenic exposure than adults owing to their more restricted diets and greater intake per unit body mass.” Contribution of breast milk and formula to arsenic exposure during the first year of life in a US prospective cohort.

This research in the USA was published in 2016 and compared the contribution to arsenic exposure of formula feeding and breastfeeding. Although the researchers noted that population-wide arsenic exposures measured at 4, 8 and 12 months of age were relatively low, formula-fed infants had higher exposures: “At all three time points, exclusively formula-fed infants had geometric mean arsenic exposures ~ 8 times higher than exclusively breastfed infants owing to arsenic in both tap water and formula powder.”  Read more...

IBFAN emphasises male exposures to hormone disruptors and the increasing awareness of the urgency for action to identify, restrict, or ban these  chemicals if their reproductive toxicity for future fathers is recognised. Next to the many burdens EDCs pose on women, they are also a burden for men. All countries are concerned by the increase in their populations’ exposures to toxic chemicals, thus measures to restrict or ban them in the EuropeUnion can set an example to follow worldwide. See 

The short introductory text to the article was written by HEAL staff and highlights the burden of EDCs in every body, male and female, and the shared responsibility of everybody in the world to campaign to ban and restrict these harmful chemicals and thus protect not only human health but also that of wildlife and our environment:  See



  • Bisphenol A is an endocrine disrupting chemical, EDC, which acts like an impostor in the human body’s endocrine system by imitating the body’s natural hormones.  This mimickry interferes with the body’s delicate mechanisms and can have negative impacts, especially at critical stages of development. Three new studies providing evidence of serious health issues in later life are summarised  by the Endocrine Society. See
  • In October 2017 the European Union banned the use of BPA in the manufacture of packaging of food products for infants and young children aged 0-3 years. Regulation will be adopted in 2018 to allow 6 months for exhaustion of existing stocks. See
  • In the European Union, Belgium, France and Sweden already have bans on BPA in food packaging, but regulatory measures differ widely among EU member states and it is essential to provide a high level of protection for the youngest and most vulnerable populations in all EU countries. In September 2017 Sweden identified 37 Bisphenols as potential endocrine disruptors. See