CPSC Staff Endorses ASTM F963-11 Heavy Element Limits, Declaring
them to be “Sufficiently Protective of Children’s
March 27, 2012 | In a recent briefing report that reviewed the effectiveness
of heavy element limits contained in the ASTM F963 toy safety standard,
Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) staff concluded that the
acceptable daily intake (ADI) and migration limits for the seven
heavy elements studied protect children and do not merit adjustment.
The effectiveness assessment, required by law under the Consumer
Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), studied antimony, arsenic,
barium, cadmium, chromium, mercury and selenium. (Lead was not included
as it has a mandatory CPSIA limit).
While the dietary approach used to determine
ADI and derive migration limits for ASTM F963 (and the EU
standard EN71-3, with which it is aligned) differs from the risk-based
approach that the CPSC typically employs, CPSC staff concluded that the
limits in ASTM F963 “generally provide a lower [more protective]
limit compared to the intake limits that resulted from the ADIs derived
by CPSC staff (…) using the risk-based approach.”
While staffers recommended against seeking
changes to that area of the ASTM standard, they suggested continued
monitoring of both the ASTM F963 and EN71-3 toy standards.
In February, CPSC Commissioners unanimously
approved changes to ASTM F963-11, including the revised heavy
element requirements. At the International Consumer Product Health
and Safety Organization (ICPHSO) Annual Symposium last month, CPSC Chair
Inez Tenenbaum acknowledged the work of the ASTM Subcommittee
on Toy Safety related to these revised heavy metal requirements in her
The full CPSC briefing package on heavy
elements can be read online.