Commission to prohibit hazardous chemicals in clothing

New rules have been adopted by amending the REACH regulation

Over the past 10 years, the EU has significantly reduced our citizens' exposure to harmful chemicals, and the Commission constantly evaluates how to further enhance the protection of consumers, workers and the environment. Thus,  on Wednesday EU's executive arm adopted new restrictions for the use of 33 substances known to cause cancer and reproductive health problems for their use in clothing, footwear and other textile articles.

The new rules have been adopted on Wednesday by amending the REACH regulation - the most advanced and comprehensive chemical legislation in the world. The aim is to protect the health of European citizens' by limiting their exposure to CMR chemicals (substances classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic and toxic for reproduction), which may be particularly harmful in case of frequent contact with human skin. These new rules set maximum concentration limits for the use of CMR substances in clothing and textiles and prohibit products exceeding these limits from being placed on the EU market, regardless of their origin of production.
Such CMR substances include nickel, certain phthalates, asbestos fibres and articles (chrysotile, crocidolite, amosite, anthophyllite, tremolite, and actinolite), grill lighter fluids and fuels for decorative lamps and dichloromethane.

The restrictions have been prepared on the basis of scientific and technical recommendations by the European Chemicals Agency, and following broad consultations with stakeholders. They will become applicable 24 months after publication of the regulation in the Official Journal of the EU.
The Commission is also issuing an explanatory guide on the restriction.

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