Toy Association Calls on EPA to Offer Exemptions in New Substance Reporting Rule

Environmental Protection AgencyOctober 4, 2021 | The Toy Association is advocating that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) exempt article importers and small businesses from a proposed rule impacting all manufacturers using or processing per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), which may be incidentally found in some toys and toy packaging.

The Toy Association joined the Downstream Users Coalition (DUC) in submitting comments to the EPA on September 27, which argued that the EPA has grossly underestimated the number of entities which would be required to report use of PFAS as well as the time and cost for each business to do so.

The proposed rule will require toy manufacturers to invest in additional research to determine any uses of PFAS substances in their products going back to 2011 and report any findings to the EPA.

“Even if no uses are found, the burden on businesses for research will be extremely onerous,” said Alan Kaufman, senior vice president of technical affairs at The Toy Association. “While it is unlikely that toy manufacturers are intentionally adding PFAS, these substances may be found in fabric finishes, wire insulation, certain paints, powder coatings, adhesives and inks, kids’ cosmetics, and grease-resistant coatings for paper and paperboard.”

The letter also called for the exemption of de minimis amounts and polymers such as PTFE (Teflon) and similar fluoropolymers (ECTFE, ETFE, FEP, PFA, etc.) that are sometimes used for molded plastic parts or as additives to other resins.

The Toy Association will continue to monitor the outcome of this rule and alert members to new developments.

Questions may be directed to The Toy Association’s Alan Kaufman, senior vice president of technical affairs.