PFAS Free Logo

Preventing PFAS pollution by ending
unnecessary uses of Forever Chemicals.


PFAS are a group of over 4,700 industrial chemicals, used in a wide range of everyday products, that now pollute air, soil and water worldwide. These ‘forever chemicals’ build-up through food chains, causing long-term damage to wildlife, and are extremely persistent in the environment. PFAS are also linked to a wide range of human health impacts from growth, learning, and behavioural problems, to cancer, immune system disorders and fertility issues.

Many current uses of PFAS are unnecessary, or can be easily replaced with safer alternatives. Paper and board food packaging is one clear example and the focus of Fidra’s current work.

PFAS diagram


PFAS are extremely persistent, highly mobile and can bioaccumulate in wildlife and human food chains.

Very little is known about the vast majority of these chemicals before they go on the market, but those that have been studied in depth have been linked to major environmental and human health concerns.

PFAS continue to be added, often unnecessarily, to a huge variety of everyday products from carpets to clothing and cosmetics, even disposable food packaging.

PFAS are used in grease proof take-away packaging, but they don’t need to be. Image: The Nix Company on Unsplash


There is a growing number of companies taking voluntary steps to reduce PFAS in their products, with many UK supermarkets and fast-food chains removing PFAS from their food packaging.

Voluntary action is only the start, legislative restrictions are needed to eliminate all unnecessary uses of PFAS. For example, banning the addition of PFAS  to food packaging, as alternatives already exist.

There are some places that PFAS currently plays an important role, for example in some medical equipment or clean energy production. We now need clear strategies to drive innovation to eradicate these remaining uses.

PFAS are ubiquitous in the aquatic environment and organisms and have been detected in air, soil, plants and biota. Image: Mana5280 on Unsplash


Help identify sources of PFAS using our simple bead test and support companies that offer PFAS-free products using our PFAS-free shopping guide.

Fidra’s ask of RETAILERS:
We’re asking UK supermarkets for a commitment to phase out all PFAS from paper and board food packaging.

Fidra’s ask of GOVERNMENT:
We’re asking the UK Government for comprehensive legislation restricting the use of all PFAS in paper and board food packaging, protecting both our health and the environment from the impacts of persistent chemicals.

PFAS are used in some non-stick coatings of cookware


Fidra worked with UK supermarkets to successfully encourage a phase-out of PFAS-based stain resistant coatings on UK school uniforms.

Fidra published a report, ‘Forever Chemicals in the Food Aisle’, demonstrating the widespread use of PFAS in UK food packaging, and through dialogue with the UK food sector, have seen 7 out of 10 major UK supermarkets take action to remove PFAS from their food packaging.

Fidra is working with leading UK NGOs to call on the UK Government to take immediate action to end all unnecessary uses of PFAS. Our joint statement is currently signed by more than 20 health and environmental NGOs.