In a press release published on November 19, 2019, the non-governmental organization Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families announced an update to their ‘Mind the Store’ campaign that reviews and scores retailers on their efforts to eliminate toxic chemicals from their products. The latest report card found that 63% of the evaluated retailers have improved over the past year, with “dramatic improvement in retailer chemical action between 2016 to 2019.” The retailers were also found for the first time to focus their efforts on removing entire classes of chemicals from their products, including “per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), ortho-phthalates and bisphenols from food packaging materials.” For the second year, the same four companies received the highest scores for their efforts: Apple, Target, Walmart, and IKEA. The report found that “the most improved companies are Ahold Delhaize, Bed Bath & Beyond, Dollar General, Lowe’s, Panera Bread, Sephora, and Staples.”

“Our federal government has failed to act on hazardous chemicals that can cause cancer, reproductive harm, and other serious illnesses,” says report co-author and Mind the Store campaign director Mike Schade. “In light of this growing regulatory void, major retailers are stepping up to safeguard our health. This is helping to bring healthier products into the hands of consumers across North America and drive the development of safer chemicals and green chemistry solutions.”

Mike Belliveau, co-author and Executive Director of the Environmental Health Strategy Center, commented “we applaud retail market leaders for protecting public health and the environment while our federal government refuses to act. Eliminating toxic chemicals – like PFAS and phthalates – from food packaging meets growing customer demand for greater food safety.”

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Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families (November 19, 2019). “New report reveals top retailers making major chemical safety advances.”

Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families (November 19, 2019). “Who’s minding the store? 2019 report card New report reveals top retailers making major chemical safety advances.”

ChemSec (November 19, 2019). “3 findings from the new Mind the Store report card.”

Kelly Franklin (November 19, 2019). “Retailer ‘report card’ reflects stronger chemical commitments.” Chemical Watch

Leigh Stringer (November 19, 2019). “Dollar General to phase out eight chemicals of concern by 2023.” Chemical Watch