Pour une rentrée scolaire responsable sans perturbateurs endocriniens - Nature For Kids

Recently, I had the opportunity to read a very interesting article in the monthly "Le Ligueur" of 19-08-2020 - number 14, devoted to endocrine disruptors (EDs) that the found in school materials for children.

Do you know what endocrine disruptors are?

These are chemical substances that are terribly harmful to the health of our children (you can find a non-exhaustive list below this article). They are found in particular in lunch boxes and plastic rulers (especially if it is recycled plastic), in cans, but also in markers, plastic pens or varnished pencils that our children love to chew on. .

It is therefore necessary to favor schoolbags made of natural and more durable materials, such as Gots organic cotton (Paste shell), supplies made of untreated wood (Ecobos), notebooks with cardboard covers (L'arbre aux papiesr or Poopoopaper).

For containers, there are alternatives to plastic, such as lunch boxes and stainless steel water bottles (Ecolunchbox, Joli Monde , Klean Kanteen).

Also favor the following labels which are a guarantee of quality and safety for our children, whether or not associated with the "Oeko-tex" label; lin a future article, I will explain their characteristics.

Non-exhaustive list of the most common endocrine disruptors.

Here is also the list of plastics, to give you a clear idea of ​​their toxicity: Under no circumstances should these plastics be heated.




Health risk for the user

Polyethylene Terephthalate

Bottles of water, soft drinks, cooking oil, fruit juice (transparent), disposable packaging of all kinds, cooking bags, cosmetic packaging…

CHILDREN: Cuddly toys and soft toys in microfibers, fabric and padding

Release of endocrine disruptors including antimony trioxide. In the Middle Ages, it was used as an emetic. It's a cousin of arsenic.

High Density Polyethylene or High Dendity Polyethylene (HDPE)

Often used for bottles of detergents, fruit juices, milk (opaque), screw caps, cosmetic bottles, shower gels, crumplable plastic bags

From the PE family. According to the National Institute for Environmental Health Information (Canada) and the Environment Health Network (France), it "would be" safe.

But it's a derivative of hydrocarbons!

HDPE poses little risk to the environment, it is 100% recyclable (and not 100% recycled).

Polyvinyl chloride

Packaging for cheese and meat.Mainly used in the manufacture of toys, plastic pipes, etc.

CHILDREN: Soft parts of dolls, bath toys, ducks, plastic books, inflatables, clothes...

Release of phthalates when heated or stored in contact with fatty substances

Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE)

Freezer bags, garbage bags, zipped food bags, cling film, trays

From the PE family According to the National Institute for Environmental Health Information (Canada) and the Environment Health Network (France), it "would be" safe. Derived from hydrocarbons, LDPE poses little risk to the environment, but it is not recyclable!


Found in Tupperware-type accessory accessories, in certain children's cups, certain flexible water bottles, reusable food containers, pots of yogurt, butter, etc.

Plastic particles pass from the container to the food, even when cold. Several studies have shown that one of the additives used for polypropylene has estrogenic activity. Added to other daily endocrine disruptors, it could therefore potentially promote breast cancer.


Food trays to take away, meat trays, fish, disposable plastic cutlery and glasses, yoghurt pots.

Release of styrene, suspected of being carcinogenic

Other, including PU (Polyurethane)

Melamine - Reusable plastic or bamboo tableware / Polyurethane = elastane


Abs, SAN: Lego, Playmobil, hard parts of dolls, rattles, teething rings, suitcases

Polycarbonate : Clear Lego, other hard plastic toys.

EVA: Foam Puzzle Mat

Potentially carcinogenic. Promotes the appearance of kidney stones / PU = synthetic rubber (petroleum-based molecule)


Abs, SAN: Stable plastics, long life.

Polycarbonate : Contains BPA (Bisphenol A - disruptor E)

EVA: Contains formamide (mutagenic and toxic for reproduction).

For more information about plastics, I refer you to the brochure "Plastic is not automatic" published by the non-profit organization ecoconso [2], of which here is an extract:

" Plastic can be harmful to your health

When you eat food that has been stored in plastic or when a child chews on an object.These are situations where compounds can migrate from plastic to the body and you are then exposed to (potentially) carcinogenic substances, endocrine disruptors..

These migrations are known and governed by standards. [6] But standards change and what is authorized today may be prohibited tomorrow, for example bisphenol-A which has been banned in baby bottles.

The (Belgian) Superior Health Council also advises to prefer glass as a food container, rather than plastic or canned food (because they contain a plastic coating on the outside). interior). He also advises against reheating food in plastic containers. [7]"

To close, here are some numbers that will make you dizzy:

To make plastic, we use a lot of petroleum, a non-renewable resource. It takes 2kg of crude oil to produce one kilo of PET, the plastic that bottles are usually made of. [1]

It is estimated that in our oceans there are

  • 8 million tons of “big waste” plastic. [3]This is badly managed waste, which ends up in the oceans (plastic bags, dishes, bottles, etc.). For the Mediterranean alone, we are talking about 570,000 tonnes of plastic waste per year! [4]
  • 0.8 to 2.5 million tonnes of “primary” microplastics, coming from our use of plastics. [5] For example, the microbeads contained in certain cosmetics, the fibers of synthetic clothing that come off when washed or the wear of car tires.


[1] Source: https://www.bafu.admin.ch/bafu/fr/home/themes/dechets/guide-des-dechet-


[2] https://www.ecoconso.be

[3] Range of 4 to 12 Mt, often averaged at 8 Mt in the literature. Plastic waste inputs from land into the ocean -> https://www.iswa.org/fileadmin/user_upload/Calendar_2011_03_AMERICANA/Science-2015-Jambeck-76 8-71__2_.pdf (2015)

[4] WWF study, June 2019 -> https://press.wwf.be/un-traitement-inadequat-des-dechets-plast-ques-fait-de-la-mer-mediterranee- an-open-sky-sewer-according-to-a-new-wwf-study . The waste comes mainly from Egypt, Turkey and Italy.

[5] IUCN, 2017 -> https://portals.iucn.org/library/sites/library/files/documents/2017-002.pdf

[6] This article from the Belgian Packaging Institute addresses the subject -> http://ibebvi.be/src/Frontend/Files/userfiles/files/Migration%20of%20cyclic%20polyester %20oligomers %20EN%20NL%20FR%20final%2003%2018.pdf

[7] Publication n°9404 of May 2019 -> https://www.health.belgium.be/sites/default/files/uploads/fields/fpshealth_theme_file/avis_9404_physic al_chemical_environmental_hygiene.pdf