The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has announced its surveillance activities in 2022 will include checking for hazardous chemicals in consumer products under both:
- Regulation (EC) 1907/2006 ‘Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals’ (REACH) – a comprehensive piece of chemical management legislation
- POPs recast Regulation – covering specific control measures relating to persistent organic pollutants (POPs)
The announcement was made on July 1, 2020 and the enforcement project is expected to be:
- Prepared – 2021
- Carried out – 2022
- Report – 2023
The intention is to broaden the scope of control and strengthen the protection of EU citizens and the environment. It will therefore look at specific types of material such as plastic, rubber and/or textiles.
The scope of the study may also include:
- Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid and its derivatives (PFOS)
The project will also check REACH duties on substances of very high concern (SVHCs) in articles for the purpose of communication in the supply chain.
Stakeholders should be aware there are currently 209 SVHCs on the Candidate List, which will trigger certain legal obligations for importers, producers and suppliers of an article containing these substances:
- Article 3 of REACH defines ‘article’ as an object which during production is given a special shape, surface or design which determines its function to a greater degree than does its chemical composition
- Article 33 of REACH requires suppliers of an article containing a substance on the Candidate List in a concentration of more than 0.1% must provide the recipient of the article (industrial or professional users, or distributors being supplied with an article but does not include consumers) with sufficient information, available to the supplier, to allow the safe use of the article, including as a minimum, the name of the SVHC. This equivalent information should be supplied, free of charge, to consumers within 45 days if it is requested
From January 5, 2021, suppliers of articles containing SVHCs on the Candidate List in a concentration of more than 0.1% will also be obliged to submit information on these articles to the Substance of Concern in Products Database (SCIP Database). This obligation was established under amended Directive 2008/98/EC (Waste Framework Directive, WFD). It relates to EU producers, assemblers, importers, distributors and other actors in the supply chain placing articles on the market. It does not apply to economic operators who exclusively supply direct to the consumer.
Manufacturers and suppliers are now advised to check their products are compliant with the provisions in all EU regulations.
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