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ANEC - ASI CC conference proposes options to enhance the chemical safety of products

Date

30 Oct 2013

Sections

Health & Consumers
Innovation & Enterprise
Trade & Society

ANEC and the ASI Consumer Council call on the European Commission to develop a systematic approach to chemicals in consumer products.

The identification of concrete options for action where gaps exist in the European legislative framework for hazardous chemicals in products: this was the aim of a conference in Brussels yesterday, co-hosted by ANEC and the Consumer Council of the Austrian Standards Institute (ASI CC).

Held at the European Economic & Social Committee, the conference – ‘Hazardous chemicals in products, the need for an enhanced EU regulation’ – saw speakers from the European Commission, and authorities from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden, address food contact materials, water supply materials, indoor emissions, textiles, toys, child care articles, tattoo colours and nano-materials.

Information on consumer products was also discussed, prior to a panel debate on strategies to achieve toxic-free products.

The conference attracted more than 150 participants.

According to the hosts, national regulations or other rules (such as those set by the Council of Europe) exist, or are in preparation, for various products. They propose these could be transformed into European legislation with relative ease.

Initiatives in these sectors could aid the commitment of the 7th Environmental Action Programme to achieve a toxic-free Europe. Nevertheless, such initiatives need to be part of a systematic approach to chemicals in consumer products, one setting broad principles and strategies for all products, as well as provisions for product-specific requirements, information, monitoring and market surveillance.

With the support of the Austrian Ministry of Health (BMG); Austrian Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs & Consumer Protection (BMASK); Belgian Public Service for Health, Food Chain Safety, & Environment (FPS); Danish Environmental Protection Agency (Danish EPA); Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure & Environment (IENM); the German Federal Environment Agency (UBA) and Swedish Chemicals Agency (KEMI), the conference has added to the momentum for change.

A declaration, summarising the goals of the event, is launched today by ANEC & the ASI Consumer Council, addressed to the European Commissioners for Health; Consumer Policy, Environment, and Enterprise & Industry.

ENDS

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About ANEC

ANEC is the European consumer voice in standardisation, defending consumer interests in the processes of technical standardisation and conformity assessment, as well as related legislation and public policies. ANEC was established in 1995 as an international non-profit association under Belgian law and is open to the representation of national consumer organisations in 33 countries.

ANEC is funded by the European Union and EFTA, with national consumer organisations contributing in kind. Its Secretariat is based in Brussels.

 

 

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