The Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee has warned people not to drink directly from disposable cups sealed with plastic, as the ink near its rim might not be safe to ingest.
Since the Environmental Protection Administration’s ban on single-use plastic straws at dine-in venues went into effect on July 1, many people have started to drink directly from disposable cups after peeling off the plastic seal, the department said.
However, most of the disposable cups that stores use to serve drinks are printed with bright colors and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has no regulations on the ink that may appear on the edges of those cups, committee officer Wang Te-ming (王德明) said on Monday.
Photo: Lo Chi, Taipei Times
To protect consumer safety, the FDA should ensure that the local health departments provide guidance to drinkware manufacturers to reduce the use of ink near the rims of the cups, he said.
Consumers should avoid drinking from the edges of disposable cups when there is ink, the committee said.
Meanwhile, the department also announced the results of a quality inspection it commissioned on disposable cups, lids and sealing films.
In June and July, the department collected 30 samples — 22 cups, four lids and four sealing films — from drink shops and cafes, and all of them passed, it said.
The inspection, which included a leachate test, was carried out by SGS Taiwan according to standards set by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, it added.
Over the span of a decade, from 2008 to last year, the number of drink shops in Taiwan has grown from about 12,000 to about 22,000, Ministry of Finance statistics showed.
Last year, sales from drink shops in Taiwan reached almost NT$70 billion (US$2.27 billion), the ministry said.
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