Providing the best product and ensuring safety
for human health and environment
Chemicals are an essential component in textile and apparel production as well as any other products manufacturing. They are used during different stages of the industrial process, from fibers’ washing to clothes’ dyeing, from printing to finishing of textiles. They can also be added to the finished product to obtain special characteristics, such as antibacterial properties in sportswear, enhance duration in filters, fire-resistance for firefighters’ suits, etc.. In the case of technical textiles and personal protective equipment, chemicals play a crucial role in providing special functionalities and enabling high performances.
Europe is the continent where the rules on chemicals are the most rigorous. The main legislation is the REACH Regulation, which addresses the collection and assessment of information on the properties and hazards of substances. It also sets restrictions to the use of chemicals in process and products. The purpose of REACH is to ensure a high level of protection of human health and the environment […] while enhancing competitiveness and innovation.
The companies of the textile value chain are affected by REACH as “downstream users”, as they don’t manufacture but use chemicals in industrial activities, either on their own or in a mixture. Companies are identified as producers of articles because they incorporate substances or mixtures into or onto materials to form an article.
REACH imposes a set of obligations on downstream users. Textile companies have to comply with a number of provisions including, limitation in the use of substances, exchange of information across the value chain, registration of substances (occasionally), communication to customers.
EURATEX contributes to the development and the implementation of current and future EU legislation as well as to safe management and use of chemicals in textiles by engaging with:
Principles guiding EURATEX’s actions
Sustainable use of chemicals in textiles.
Fair and equal enforcement of legislation.
Wise and technically feasible substitution of chemicals of very high concern.
Harmonised global requirements for real consumer and environment protection.