India restricts use of toluene in food packaging inks

India restricts use of toluene in food packaging inks

BIS finally published the long awaited revision of the Indian standard IS 15945 in July 2020. The major highlight of the revised standard IS 15495:2020 (First Revision) is the inclusion of toluene in the negative list or Annexure A. Additionally, the addition of titanium acetylacetonate, di-n-butylphthalate (DBP), di-isononyl phthalate (DINP); some modifications in the segment of responsibility of ink manufacturers are few other changes that are included in the newly revised standard.

The Indian Standard was first published in 2004. This standard was formulated with a view to assist the manufacturers of printing inks to produce inks, which are intended for use on food packages and which do not contain any hazardous chemicals that may get transferred to the food packed, and help food packers and manufacturers of packages in selecting proper quality printing ink. General guidelines for exclusion of certain substances from printing ink formulations intended for use on food packages have also been prescribed in this standard.

The committee responsible for development of the standard has reviewed the standard in view of overall impact of constituent chemicals of the ink formulation considering their reported toxicological profile, hazardous to environment and health of human being and possible contamination of food product while food products are being packed in the printing packages.

The committee, therefore, decided to revise this standard by incorporating prohibition of toluene under ‘solvents’ category, phthalates (di-n-butylphthalate, di-isononyl phthalate) under ‘plasticizers’ category and titanium acetylacetonate under ‘various compounds’ category in Annex-A of exclusion list on the basis of their hazards to health and environment. Provision also incorporated in the revised version to restrict limit of the sum of concentration levels of lead, cadmium, mercury and chromium (VI) to 100 ppm for printing inks. Also, technical advancements that have taken place since the publication of this standard have been considered in this revision.

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