On January 17, 2020, the Department of Ecology for the U.S. state of Washington published a draft report identifying a first set of nine priority products under its safer products program. Of these products, food contact-related entries include food cans and printing inks. Food cans containing bisphenols were identified with human exposure and the volume used highlighted as major concerns. Printing inks were also identified due to concerns about the environmental release of unintentionally generated polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). The report provides an overview of the products’ estimated uses in the state, potential exposures, and possible alternatives based on reviews of published scientific literature, government reports, and economic and market information.

Launched in April 2019, the state’s program aims to reduce hazardous chemicals in consumer products, and it authorizes the state to regulate classes of chemicals where safer alternatives are available (FPF reported). A first set of priority chemical classes have previously been identified (FPF reported) and were used to identify the first set of priority products outlined in the draft report. These chemical classes include: per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), phthalates, organohalogen flame retardants, phenolic compounds, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Priority products within the program are identified as being significant sources or uses of these chemical classes. Next steps within the program are to determine if safer alternatives for these chemicals in these products are available and feasible, and if regulatory restrictions or reporting are therefore needed. The report is planned to be open for a 45-day public consultation period and then submitted to the state’s legislature on June 1, 2020.

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Department of Ecology (January 17, 2020). “Priority Consumer Products Draft Report to the Legislature: Safer Products for Washington Implementation Phase 2.”

Kelly Franklin (January 20, 2020). “Washington state tentatively names first priority products.” Chemical Watch

Keller & Heckman LLP (January 27, 2020). “Washington Names Printing Inks and Food and Beverage Cans as Draft Priority Products.”