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USA: CPSC updates the laboratory acceptance and exemption on certain plastics for final phthalates rules

February 2018- Relevant for: Toys and children's products

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has recently issued final rules on the upcoming new phthalates bans on the notice of requirements (NOR) and exemption on certain plastics. Effective 25 April 2018, toys and childcare articles must be certified by a CPSC accepted third party laboratory on the new phthalates prohibitions1 under 16 CFR 1307.

The NOR for phthalates2 provides a 2-year transition period allowing laboratories to update their accreditation scope and CPSC listing to the new test method CPSC-CH-C1001-09.4 (2018)3. Before 3 February 2020, CPSC will still accept testing results from laboratories which are CPSC-accepted to the previous test method. Laboratories that conduct testing to support product certifications to the new phthalates rule must list in their test reports “16 CFR 1307” and “CPSC-CH-C1001-09.3 (2010)” until they have made official updates to their accreditation.

On 26 January 2018, CPSC published the Direct final rule4 to revise the determination rule 16 CFR 13085 expanding the seven specified plastics and accompanying additives do not contain the final prohibited phthalates in concentration above 0.1%, and are not required to be third party tested to assure compliance. This helps to relieve the manufacturer’s obligation to have those plastics tested by the CPSC third party laboratories. However, manufacturer or importer must still comply with the phthalates prohibitions under CPSIA.

See below summary of phthalates bans and list of specified plastics that can be exempted.

Table A: Comparison between current and NEW phthalates restriction in toys and child care articles

Current phthalates restriction
(Until 24 April 2018)

NEW phthalates restriction
(Effective 25 April 2018)

Limit
(Remains unchanged)

Children's toys, and any childcare articles

Permanent Ban
DEHP
DBP
BBP

Children's toys, and any childcare articles

Permanent Ban
DEHP
DBP
BBP
DINP
DIBP
DPENP
DHEXP
DCHP

0.1% by weight (each)

Children's toy that can be placed in a child's mouth, and any childcare article

Interim Ban
DINP
DIDP
DnOP

Table B: List of specified plastics that are not required third party testing

Specified plastics

Final rule 16 CFR 1308

  • Polypropylene (PP)

  • Polyethylene (PE)

  • Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS)

  • High-impact polystyrene (HIPS)

  • General purpose polystyrene (GPPS)

  • Medium-impact polystyrene (MIPS)

  • Super high-impact polystyrene (SHIPS)

Listed plastics are exempted from third party testing for regulated phthalates (DEHP, DBP, BBP, DINP, DIBP, DPENP, DHEXP and DCHP) in Section 108 of the CPSIA

Abbreviations:

Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP)
Diisodecyl phthalate (DIDP)
Di-n-hexyl phthalate (DHEXP)

Dibutyl phthalate (DBP)
Di-n-octyl phthalate (DNOP)
Dicyclohexyl phthalate (DCHP)

Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP)
Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP)

Diisononyl phthalate (DINP)
Di-n-pentyl phthalate (DPENP)

 

[1] USA: CPSC amends phthalates ban on toys and child care articles, dated October 2017
[2] Federal Register on 1 February 2018
[3] CPSC-CH-C1001-09.4 (2018) published on 17 January 2018
[4] Federal Register on 26 January 2018
[5] USA: CPSC issues final rule for exemption of Phthalates on certain plastics, dated September 2017

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