News from CRIS: Trending - Polyvinyl Alcohol

May 26, 2021

What is polyvinyl alcohol?

Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) is a water-soluble synthetic polymer, and we encounter it in various applications, from glue to medications to food packaging to pods (1). 

We've become more familiar with this ingredient in recent years. We've seen more companies use PVA's unique sturdy yet water-soluble properties to package concentrated cleaning products in an easy-to-use pod. 
However, it's not just safe to use for cleaning purposes. PVA is approved safe by the FDA for food packaging, is considered a GRAS ingredient by the FDA, and has biomedical and pharmaceutical applications as well (1,2,3).

Is it safe for humans? 

Sub-chronic toxicity and genotoxicity studies confirm that PVA is safe for humans when exposed via numerous exposure pathways in typical daily exposure (1,2).
However, the ingredients inside the PVA encasement are often not as safe. Pods made from PVA may contain highly concentrated detergents that can cause harm if consumed or exposed to our skin. It's vital to keep these out of children's reach. 


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