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Chinese apparel makers need to find new flame retardants
Aug '13
In recent months, several U.S. states have initiated proposals for putting restrictions on the use of chemical flame retardants (FR), including polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs).
Chemical flame retardants are widely used in textiles for enhancing fire safety on using those products.
However, in recent years, the American public and consumers of chemical flame retardants have become increasingly concerned about potential health threats due to heavy use of chemical flame retardants, especially PBDEs and other halogen-containing flame retardants, as this affect the functioning of the nervous system, as well as fertility and child growth and development. These retardants also increase the risk of cancer.
The US has been China’s major export market for textiles and apparel and already more than a dozen states, including California, have introduced restrictions on the use of chemical flame retardants. This will certainly impact Chinese apparel exports to the US. As such, the Chinese inspection and quarantine departments will have to pay close attention to export market for use of flame retardants, according to experts.
The departments would need to actively communicate and contact with local exporters to ensure compliance with U.S. export laws and regulations of the relevant technical requirements.
Secondly, they would have to strengthen product upgrading and technological innovation efforts. The Chinese manufacturers would have to look for development of new flame retardants or would have to find a new alternative to traditional chemical flame retardants, to improve product competitiveness in the US market.
Finally, while procuring raw materials, enterprises can send samples for testing prior to use in making apparels, for finding out the presence of banned chemical flame retardants.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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