OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 updates take effect April 1.
Test criteria for OEKO-TEX Standard 100 product certification in 2015 have been updated and will take effect on April 1. The International Association for Research and Testing in the Field of Textile Ecology (OEKO-TEX) researches global regulations that call for reduction or elimination of toxic or harmful substances in products and modifies its testing criteria and limits to ensure that certified products are safe for consumer use. The following changes will occur:
- Dropping limits for the sum of four phenolic chemicals-nonylphenol, octylphenol and ethoxylates of each-in textile production from 250 mg/kg to 100 mg/kg. Eliminating these environmentally harmful substances from products is a textile industry goal.
- Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonates (PFOS) are toxic and carcinogenic compounds that were widely used since the 1940s in products such as Teflon® coatings in cookware, Gore-Tex® performance fabrics, stain-resistant carpets and PTFE plastics. Norway established limits for textiles, carpets and coated consumer goods. For all product classes, the PFOA and PFOS must be less than 1.0 micrograms/m2.
- The limit for chromium VI in leather is less than 3.0 mg/kg (below the detection limit), and for other materials it is less than 0.5 mg/kg.
- Decoration materials (in product class IV) can only be made from product class I-III materials that are flame-retardant and deemed harmless to health. All expressly prohibited flame-retardant products will be listed in the future in Annex 5.
- The total cadmium content of product in classes I-IV is 40 mg/kg, complying with the state of Washington’s “Children’s Safe Products Act,” the strictest law worldwide for cadmium. Previous total cadmium content was 50 mg/kg in product class I and 100 mg/kg in product classes II-IV.
- Formamide will be added to the Standard as a new test substance for compact foams and foamed plastics. The limit value is 200 mg/kg in all product classes.
- Materials containing or that may contain free carcinogenic arylamines listed in Annex 5 cannot be certified.
- For phthalates/softeners in all four product classes, testing will include dihexyl phthalate and diisohexyl phthalate.
- Two pigments already classed as carcinogenic and prohibited, C.I. Pigment red 104 and C.I. Pigment yellow 34, are now included in Annex 5 of Standard 100. They are already included in Annex XIV of the European Union’s Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulations.