In an article published on September 9, 2015 by the magazine Ensia, journalist Rachel Cernansky reports on the increasing move of U.S. states to demanding disclosure of the chemical composition of consumer products from companies. U.S. states Washington, Vermont, Oregon and Maine all have passed laws in recent years that require manufacturers of children’s products and other consumer product categories to report their use of chemicals of concern (COCs). These disclosure requirements have led to empowerment of consumers by providing them with knowledge, and have induced major companies to reformulate products without COCs, Cernansky writes. Also, these requirements are creating more transparency in the supply chain because companies are forced to think about what goes into their products, Cernansky explains. As examples of COCs, Cernansky names among others bisphenol A (BPA, CAS 80-05-7), formaldehyde (CAS 50-00-0), nonylphenols, phthalates, brominated flame retardants, and various heavy metals. All of these substances have previously been detected in food packaging. They are associated with harmful effects on human health and the environment, such as cancer, endocrine disruption, respiratory problems, water and soil contamination, and disruption of aquatic ecosystems.
Rachel Cernansky (September 9, 2015). “One by one, states are giving consumers the right to know about chemicals in products.” Ensia