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EU notifies WTO of change to chromium VI limit in toys


Chromium VI is toxic, has irritating properties, can induce allergic  reactions and is known to cause cancer when inhaled at work places. At present, it cannot be excluded that chromium VI can also induce cancer in humans when taken up orally. Children are likely to suck or chew on toys or even swallow small parts of them. Therefore children can take up chromium VI which may be released from toys.
some toysThe virtual safe dose for chromium VI was lowered as a result of newer studies published since the EU Toy Safety Directive was last  updated in 2009. The Scientific Committee on Health and Environmental Risks (SCHER) is of the opinion that the current migration limits  for chromium VI from toys should be revised to take into account this new, lower value. Furthermore, to account for the uptake of chromium VI from other sources such as drinking water and the environment, the SCHER recommends that any additional exposure to chromium VI from toys should be minimised to the lowest achievable levels when using  best available technologies.

In its final Opinion on chromium VI in toys, published in February 2015, the Commission's Scientific Committee on Health and Environmental Risks (SHER) concluded the limit should be lowered to 9.4 µg/kg.

The proposed date of adoption is the first quarter of next year, with entry into force slated for the third quarter of 2019.

The final date for comments on the revision to the toy safety Directive is 60 days from the notification.

Related information

WTO notification
Directive  2009/48/EC  of  the  European  Parliament  and  of  the Council  of  18  June  2009  on  the  safety  of  toys,  OJ  L  170,  30.6.2009
EU Scientific Committees: Final opinion on chromium VI in toys

International Organization for Standardization: ISO 8124-3:2010 -- Safety of toys -- Part 3: Migration of certain elements

Related EVISA Resources

Brief summary: The role of elemental speciation in legislation
Brief summary: Speciation and Toxicity
Brief summary: Standard methods for chromium speciation analysis
Brief summary: LC-ICP-MS - The most often used hyphenated system for speciation analysis

 Link Database: Toxicity of hexavalent chromium (chromate)
 Link Database: Industrial Use of chromate
 Link Database: Occupational exposure of hexavalent chromium
 Link Database: Legislation for hexavalent chromium at the workplace
 Link Database: Methods for chromium speciation analysis

Analytical techniques for chromium speciation analysis for toys:

Brief summary: Standard methods for chromium speciation analysis

Agilent: LC-ICP-MS method for the determination of trivalent and hexavalent chromium in toy materials to meet European regulation EN71-3:2012 Migration of certain elements

Analytik Jena: Determination of Trace Elements in Toys

Perkin Elmer: Determination of Hexavalent Chromium in Toys by using UV/Vis Spectrometry

Shimadzu: Analysis  of  Heavy  Metals  in  Toys  and  Accessories  by ICPE-9800 Series

Thermo Scientific: The Migration of Elements from Toys and Speciation of Chromium (VI) in Toy Material Using a Low Cost IC-ICP-MS Solution

Related EVISA News

March 12, 2014: EU’s proposal to restrict Cr (VI) in leather in final stages
August 8, 2014: EU Commission consults on chromium VI in toys
February 15, 2010: Chromium speciation in solid matrices

last time modified: September 14, 2017


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