The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the European Union’s agency responsible for food and feed safety, has issued a favorable opinion that supports the safety of Eastman Chemical Co.’s Tritan copolyester. The opinion paves the way for the European Commission to add a key monomer used in Tritan to its list of acceptable monomers for the production of plastics intended for use in food packaging, according to Eastman in Kingsport, Tenn.

Tritan, a new generation copolyester, delivers the advantages of traditional copolyesters such as clarity and toughness, but it also offers high heat and chemical resistance, improved design flexibility and ease of processing, according to Eastman. Tritan can be used in a range of applications such as small appliances, infant care products, housewares and certain medical devices.

“Strict testing and review is conducted on our products to ensure their quality and safety before receiving clearance for use in consumer market applications,” says Lucian Boldea, Eastman’s business director, specialty plastics business. “We are happy to add EFSA to the list of governmental agencies that deem Eastman Tritan copolyester as acceptable, from a chemical safety standpoint, for use in specified food contact applications.”

According to Eastman, consumer interest is growing for plastic products that are tough, clear and durable in the dishwasher. Products molded with Tritan copolyester can be repeatedly washed without the crazing, cracking and hazing that can result from continued exposure to high heat and aggressive cleaning agents.