In an article published on June 20, 2017 the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) announced that its Committee for Socio-Economic Analysis (SEAC) has adopted a final opinion supporting the restriction of bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP, CAS 117-81-7), dibutyl phthalate (DBP, CAS 84-74-2), diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP, CAS 84-69-5), and benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP, CAS 85-68-7). The restriction proposal, prepared by ECHA and Denmark, foresees to ban the four phthalates “in articles, such as flooring, coated fabrics and paper, recreational gear and equipment, mattresses, footwear, office supplies and equipment, and other articles moulded or coated with plastic, that cause exposure through the skin or by inhalation.” SEAC had agreed on a draft opinion in March 2017 (FPF reported) which was then open for public consultation. In its final opinion, SEAC reaffirms that “the proposed restriction is the most appropriate EU-wide measure to address the identified risks in terms of the proportionality of its socio-economic benefits to its costs.” ECHA noted that “the proposed restriction will apply three years after the amendment of the REACH Annex XVII comes into force.”

DEHP, DBP, DIBP, and BBP are classified as substances of very high concern (SVHCs) due to their reprotoxic properties and endocrine disrupting effects in humans (FPF reported). They can be found in different inventories of food contact substances, such as the Union List (Annex I of Regulation (EU) No 10/2011), the ESCO working group list of non-plastic FCMs, and the FACET inventory of FCMs (FPF reported).

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ECHA (June 20, 2017). “SEAC adopts restriction proposals on four phthalates and TDFAs in sprays used by the public.

Chemical Watch (June 21, 2017). “Echa’s Seac adopts restriction proposals on four phthalates.