New EU-Regulation for PAH

13 January 2014

Photo: Rainer Sturm/

BRUSSELS. According to the new EU-regulation 1272/2013, from December 2015 consumer products only shall be placed on the market, if they comply with the new limits for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) classified as carcinogenic. The regulation refers to products, which contain components which during normal use come into contat with skin or oral cavity, like toys, clothes, sport equipment etc.

PAH are generated during combusting processes of organic material like oil. They are also contained in oil derived products like plastics. In textile, apparel and shoe industry they are also used in special extender oils as softener e.g. in rubber boots, as component of azo dyes for deep black dyeing processes or for fabric finishing processes.

For products such as sport equipmet, household utensils, tools and clothes the limit value is 1 mg/kg for each PAH compound. For toys and childcare articles a lower limit value fo 0.5 mg/kg has been set.

In future these limit values will be mandatory for all consumer products on the EU market. Retailers should inform their suppliers as soon as possible about the new regulation to create awareness and to give  enough time to implement special processing steps to remove the PAH.


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