BPA Found in Receipts, MPCA Asks Businesses to Go Paperless

Posted at: 02/20/2013 5:24 PM
Updated at: 02/20/2013 6:46 PM
By: Katherine Johnson

Change is always tough, especially for a 40-year-old business like Keys Café in Roseville. They're retiring the traditional staple at the front - the cash register - for a more electronic system. But researchers say this new system may not be high-tech enough. 

"We'll still be giving out the old fashioned receipts," said owner Roy Hunn.

That's the problem. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is encouraging businesses to switch to paperless receipts because the paper, even in Keys new cash register, contains BPA.

"Neither the people that are working in those businesses nor their customers need to handle these papers unnecessarily," said Madalyn Cioci with the MN Pollution Control Agency.

Studies have linked the chemical to obesity, attention deficit disorder and reproductive problems, especially in younger people.  The CDC estimates 93% of Americans have the chemical in their blood.

"We know it's a problem, we know it's on our priority list of chemicals, and if there's an easy way that's beneficial to the businesses to ditch some of it, we want to do that," said Cioci.

"Most of the customer isn't keeping the receipt anyways," said Hunn.  "It's usually going in the trash."

Hunn estimates eliminating receipts could save him up to $400 a month.  Even with a 40 year tradition to uphold, he's still open to trying new things.

The MPCA is offering assistance to businesses willing to give paperless receipts a shot.  For more information, click here.