The Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has posted a revised proposal to designate perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) as a priority chemical (PC) for reporting. If adopted, this will apply if the PFOS is intentionally added to children’s products or any other consumer product where a child under the age of 12 may come into direct contact with it.
The DEP originally posted the proposal in April 2019 and held a public hearing. This produced several comments, which led to the revised proposal being published on October 2, 2019. Stakeholders had until November 4, 2019, to make comments on this revised proposal, which broadly clarified the scope of the legislation.
The proposed scope is:
- Childcare articles
- Clothing, footwear, sleepwear
- Cookware, tableware, reusable food and beverage containers (referring to containers with a lid, cover, cap or nipple, such as baby bottles, spill-proof cups, sports bottles and thermoses, as well as disposable and reusable dishes such as plates, bowls, cups/glasses and cutlery)
- Cosmetics and personal care products
- Craft supplies
- Electronic devices
- Household furniture and furnishings
Products that are exempt include:
- Receptacles containing food or beverage at the time of sale
- Containers or packaging for food or beverage products, unless they are marketed or intended for use by children under three years of age
- Motor vehicles or watercrafts, except detachable car seats
- Used products
Maine’s ‘Toxic Chemicals in Children’s Products’ Law (Title 38, Chapter 16-D) was enacted in 2008. If requires manufacturers or distributors of listed children’s products to disclose specific information on any PCs added to the product, which exceed the de minimis level. It does not apply to inaccessible components, and some other articles.
The law prioritizes chemicals in three categories:
- Chemicals of concern (CoCs) – approximately 1,400 chemicals
- Chemicals of high concern (CHCs) – 36 chemicals
- Priority chemicals (PCs) – 13 chemicals
PCs are drawn from the CHC list which, in turn, are taken from the CoC list. These chemicals are evaluated and updated periodically.
The law defines a children’s product as “a consumer product intended for, made for or marketed for use by children under 12 years of age, and any consumer product containing a chemical of high concern that when used or disposed of will likely to result in a child under 12 years of age or a fetus being exposed to that chemical.”
If accepted the proposal will require manufacturers and distributors of products within the scope of the regulation to reporting the intentional use of PFOS that exceeds the practical quantification limit (PQL), within 180 days of the final rule’s effective date or 30 days after the product is offered for sale.
SGS Toy & Juvenile Product Services
SGS offers a wide range of services to ensure that products comply with relevant standards for childcare articles and children’s equipment. They provide consulting, training, product development, testing, audit and inspection services to ensure that products comply with strict regulations worldwide, demonstrating the safety and quality of juvenile products being brought to the market. Learn more about SGS’s Toy & Juvenile Product Services.
SGS SafeGuardS keep you up to date with the latest news and developments in the consumer goods industry. Read the full Maine, USA, Revises Proposal For Designating PFOS as a Priority Chemical For Reporting SafeGuardS.
Subscribe here to receive SGS SafeGuardS direct to your inbox.
For further information contact:
Global Information and Innovation Manager
Tel: (+852) 2774 7420
SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 97,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 2,600 offices and laboratories around the world.