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The European Union (EU) has issued a proposal to prohibit certain textile products that contain carcinogenic, mutagenic of toxic to reproduction (CMR) substances, both category 1A and 1B, in amounts that exceed prescribed levels.

The substances and their specified concentrations are:

  • Extractable Heavy Metals – 1 mg/kg (expressed as each metal)
    • Cadmium and its compounds
    • Chromium VI
    • Arsenic
    • Lead and its compounds
  • Solvents / VOCs – 5mg/kg
    • Benzene
  • PAHs – 1 mg/kg (each)
    • Benz[a]anthracene
    • Benz[e]acephenanthrylene
    • Benzo[a]pyrene
    • Benzo[e]pyrene
    • Benzo[j]fluoranthene
    • Benzo[k]fluoranthene
    • Chrysene
    • Dibenz[a,h]anthracene
  • Chlorotoluenes – 1 mg/kg (each)
    • α,α,α,4-tetrachlorotoluene
    • α,α,α-trichlorotoluene
    • α-chlorotoluene
  • Formaldehyde – 75 mg/kg
  • Phthalates – 1000 mg/kg (each)
    • 1,2-benzenedicarboxylic acid; di-C 6-8-branched alkylesters, C 7-rich (DIHP)
    • Bis(2-methoxyethyl) phthalate (DMEP)
    • Diisopentylphthalate (DiPP)
    • Di-n-pentyl phthalate (DPP)
    • Di-n-hexyl phthalate (DnHP)
  • Solvents / VOCs – 3000 mg/kg (each)
    • N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone; 1-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP)
    • N,N-dimethylacetamide (DMAC)
    • N,N-dimethylformamide; dimethyl formamide (DMF)
  • Dyestuff – 50 mg/kg (each)
    • C.I. Disperse Blue 1
    • C.I. Basic Red 9
    • C.I. Basic Violet 3 with ≥ 0,1 % of Michler's ketone
  • Others
  • 4-chloro-o-toluidinium chloride – 30 mg/kg
  • 2-Naphthylammoniumacetate – 30 mg/kg
  • 4-methoxy-m-phenylene diammonium sulphate; 2,4-diaminoanisole sulphate – 30 mg/kg
  • 2,4,5-trimethylaniline hydrochloride – 30 mg/kg
  • Quinoline – 50 mg/kg

The drafted Regulation, notified through the World Trade Organization, would introduce a new entry into Annex XVII of Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006 – Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH).

It will cover:

  • Clothing or related accessories
  • Textiles other than clothing which, under normal or reasonably foreseeable conditions of use, come into contact with human skin to an extent similar to clothing
  • Footwear

The regulation would exempt:

  • Clothing, related accessories or footwear, or parts of clothing, related accessories or footwear, made exclusively of natural leather, fur or hide
  • Non-textile fasteners and non-textile decorative attachments
  • Second-hand clothing, related accessories, textiles other than clothing or footwear
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) within the scope of Regulation (EU) 2016/425
  • Medical devices within the scope of Regulation (EU) 2017/745
  • Disposable textiles (designed to be used only once or for a limited time and are not intended for subsequent use for the same or similar purpose)

The proposal was issued in February 2018 and stakeholders are advised to check their products comply with the latest European regulations relating to textiles offered for sale in Europe.

SGS Softlines Services

SGS has a worldwide network of over 40 state-of-the-art laboratories specializing in softline testing. Their committed team is drawn from multi-disciplinary backgrounds, allowing them to carry out a comprehensive range of physical, chemical and functional testing services for components, materials and finished products. SGS helps companies ensure quality, performance and compliance with international, industrial and regulatory standards worldwide. Learn more about SGS’s Softlines Services.

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For further information contact:

Louann Spirito

Director Technical Support, Softlines

Tel: +1 973 461 7919



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