EU Proposes to Restrict Lead and Compounds under REACH Regulation

Geneva, (PresseBox) - The Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) and the Committee for Socio-Economic Analysis (SEAC) have recently agreed on Sweden's proposal to restrict lead and its compounds in consumer articles that can be placed in the mouth by small children. The 60-day public consultation on the SEAC draft opinion was launched in December 2013 and the final opinion is projected to be adopted in March 2014.

ECHA to Restrict Lead in Consumer Products including Toys and Children's Products

In March 2013, the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) initiated a 6-month public consultation on Sweden's proposal to restrict lead in certain articles (1).

On 11 December 2013, the Socio-Economic Analysis Committee (SEAC) agreed on a draft opinion to restrict lead and its compounds on an EU-wide basis. The proposal would restrict lead and its compounds to articles, or accessible parts of articles, for the general public and which can be placed in the mouth of children. The restriction limit is no more than 0.05% (500 mg/kg). (2) (3)

Under the draft opinion, an article or part of an article can be placed in the mouth by children if it is less than 5 cm in one dimension or has detachable or protruding parts of that size. The European standard EN 71-1 shall be used to determine 'accessible parts' of articles by children. (3)

The 60-day public consultation will assist SEAC to adopt its final opinion in March 2014.

Highlights of the draft opinion are summarized in Table 1 within the latest SafeguardS bulletin.

References:
(1) SGS SafeGuardS No. 53/13, and references therein
(2) RAC and SEAC agreed on restriction and authorization, ECHA, 13 December 2013,
(3) Public consultation on the draft opinion of the Committee of Social-economic Analysis (SEAC)

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