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EU public consultation on hazardous substances in textiles
Dec '15
The European Commission has launched a public consultation on a possible restriction of hazardous substances that are carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic to reproduction (CMRs) used in textile articles, an industrial news website has reported.

The EU has already compiled a preliminary restricted substances list. Textile articles and clothing were selected as a first test-case because of the high likelihood of consumer exposure to CMR substances potentially present in those articles. The consultation will close on 22nd January 2016.

The Commission is in collaboration with the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) and member states' competent authorities to identify a preliminary list of 291 CMR substances in categories 1A (substances known to have carcinogenic potential for humans) and category 1B (substances presumed to have carcinogenic potential for humans) which may potentially be present in textile articles and clothing. The listed substances include dyes, pigments, colorants, phthalates, solvents, flame retardants and PAHs, the report said.

The list of CMR substances include classified dyes and carcinogenic amines, petroleum and coal stream substances.

The possible restriction would cover clothing and footwear articles that consist of at least 80 per cent of textile fibers by weight, or articles that contain a part that consists of at least 80 per cent of textile fibers by weight.

The possible restriction covers raw, unfinished, semi-finished and finished goods, whether or not coated or laminated, including articles such as clothing, footwear, accessories, interior textiles, fibers, yarn, fabric and knitted panels.

Articles intended to be covered include underwear, nightwear, swimwear, garments, scarves, ties, handkerchiefs, hats, gloves, socks, footwear made of synthetic/artificial leather or artificial furs or hides.

Interior articles such as hangings and curtains, carpets and other floor coverings, table mats, table cloths, towels, bed linens, pillow cases would also come under the purview.

Articles excluded from the possible restriction include footwear, clothing or their parts and accessories made of real leather, natural furs or hides. Toys are also excluded.

A public consultation has been launched in order for the Commission to collect relevant information on considering the proportionality and enforceability of a possible restriction in the textile sector and the possible socio-economic effects of the ban. (SH)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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