Here’s some news to warm your cold, congested heart as you choke down that kale salad while your co-workers destroy a Meat Lover’s Supreme in the next room: Not only will the sausage and pepperoni on that piping-hot platter of New Years’ temptation send them to an early grave, so will the box it came in. That’s the gist of an announcement made by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier today, in which the regulatory body announced that it will ban three chemicals commonly used in food packaging—i.e. pizza boxes—due to concerns that they cause cancer.
The offending chemicals are three types of perfluoroalkyl ethyl, which is applied to cardboard food containers as an oil and water repellant. In other words, it’s the stuff that keeps the pizza box from getting soaked through with grease. This isn’t the first time polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) have come under scrutiny, as other formulations of PFASs have been banned in the past—over the objections of manufacturer DuPont, of course.
It gets even better: While pizza boxes are one of the more common (and internet-friendly) applications of PFASs, they are also used in thousands of other, less sexy products. In other words, everything is going to kill you, so you might as well do what you want. Happy New Year!