Environmental Decision Memo for Food Contact Notification No. 000006
Date: February 10, 2000
From: Environmental Chemist, Environmental Review Team (ERT)
Division of Product Manufacture and Use (HFS-246)
Subject: Premarket Notification FCN No.000006 for an Ion Exchange Resin Used as a Component of Repeat Use Food Contact Articles for Treating Potable Water
Notifier: Rohm and Haas Co.
Philadelphia, PA 19106
To: Division of Petition Control (HFS-215)
Attention: Parvin M. Yasaei, Ph.D.
Through Team Leader, ERT
Attached is the Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) that we have prepared for the above cited PMN submission. When this notification becomes effective, the EA/FONSI should be made available to the public. Please let us know if there is any change in the identity or use of the food contact substance that would be inconsistent with the identity and use described in the FONSI.
Environmental Assessment for FCN No. 000006
1. Description of the Proposed Action
The proposed action is to provide for the safe use of completely hydrolyzed copolymer of acrylonitrile and trivinylcyclohexane ion-exchange resin (CAS Registry No. 109961-42-4) to treat potable water. Adjuvant substances permitted for use in ion-exchange resins complying with 21 CFR 173.25 may be used in the subject ion-exchange resin subject to any limitations in the authorizing regulation or notification. The finished ion-exchange resin must meet any applicable specifications prescribed in 21 CFR 173.25. This action was originally requested by Rohm and Haas Company in a food additive petition (FAP 8A4588), the notice of filing for which was published in the Federal Register on April 1, 1998 [63 FR 15851]. The notice of filing contained the agency's decision that approval of the petition would qualify for categorical exclusion under 21 CFR 25.32(j). This exclusion is for actions when the substance is used as a component of a food-contact surface of permanent or semi-permanent equipment or of another food-contact article intended for repeated use.
The Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act (FDAMA) of 1997 (Pub. L. 105-115) amended section 409 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the act) to establish a premarket notification (PMN) process as the primary method for authorizing a new use of a food additive that is a food contact substance. Section 409(h)(6) of the act defines a food contact substance as any substance intended for use as a component of materials used in manufacturing, packing, packaging, transporting or holding food if such use is not intended to have any technical effect in such food. Under the PMN process, a notification becomes effective 120 days after the date of receipt by FDA, unless FDA determines that, based on the data and information before the agency, the use of the substance is not safe and FDA objects to such notification within 120 days. If FDA does not object within 120 days to the use of a food contact substance that is the subject of a PMN, the substance may be legally marketed for the notified use.
In a letter dated October 26, 1999, the Agency told petitioners and requestors who had pending food additive petitions or threshold of regulation exemption requests for the use of a food contact substance, that the petitioned or requested action might be eligible for a PMN under section 409(h) of the FFDCA. The sponsors were told that they could consider withdrawing such a petition or request and resubmiting it as a PMN. Rohm and Haas Company requested in a letter dated November 15, 1999, that FAP 8A4588 be converted to a PMN.
The types of substances and the uses of such substances under the categorical exclusion in 21 CFR 25.32(j) are the same whether a sponsor submits a food additive petition, a request for exemption from regulation as a food additive under 21 CFR §170.39, or a PMN. However, a categorical exclusion for allowing a PMN to become effective is not currently one of the enumerated types of actions listed in §25.32(j). Therefore, we have prepared this environmental assessment for the subject notification.
2. Environmental Consequences of the Proposed Action
This notification involves a food contact substance that is a component of an article intended for repeated use in treating potable water. We have found that the very small quantities of substances that could potentially enter the environment from this type of use are highly unlikely to have a significant effect on the environment (see 61 FR 19476 at 19482, May 1,1996). The basis for the Agency's decision to establish the categorical exclusion in §25.32(j) for food additive petitions is the same basis that would be applicable to PMNs. Therefore, the Agency's experience with the food additive petitions that it reviewed to support a categorical exclusion for such actions is relevant to PMNs.
These substances ordinairily have limited potential for causing any significant environmental effects as a result of their use and disposal. The principal route of potential environmental introduction results from its disposal after use. The likelihood for significant introduction of substances to the environment due to disposal is very low because of the long service life of the food-contact equipment or other repeat-use articles such as the one in this notification and the limited market volumes of the food contact substance.
In the claim of categorical exclusion in FAP 8A4588, the petitioner certified that no extraordinary circumstances were expected which could cause adverse effects on human health and the environment. We do not believe that the conversion of this petition to a PMN would alter the fact that no extraordinary circumstances are likely to occur as a result of this action.
3. Alternatives to the Proposed Action
Alternatives to the proposed action need not be considered, because no potential adverse environmental effects have been identified.
4. List of Preparers
John L. Dennison
Environmental Review Team
Division of Product Manufacture and Use
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
Food and Drug Administration