OEKO-TEX STANDARD 100: NEW CRITERIA UPDATED
The Oeko-Tex Association has announced new changes to the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 with immediate effect including changes to the limits of brominated flame retardants and plasticisers on textiles, how heavy metals are detected and how all tested chemicals will be measured.
Effective 1 January 2009, this routine update by Oeko-Tex announces that all limit values and test criteria of the Oeko-Tex certification system will from now on be expressed in mg/kg rather than ppm. In line with the European REACh legislation, the common textile flame retardant chemicals decaBDE (decabromodiphenyl ether) and HBCDD (hexabromocyclododecane) have been banned by Oeko-Tex Standard 100 as well as the problematic phthalate chemicals (DEHP, BBP and DBP), which already exist for Oeko-Tex Product classes I and II. Phthalates have been used in the T-shirt printing business as a plasticizer for many years and are required to make printed images soft and bendy especially if there are lots of colours layered onto the garment. In the new version of the Oeko-Tex criteria catalogue, it is also now possible to test textile items in which cadmium and lead are bound into a massive matrix and therefore cannot be exactly detected in the presence of a solution of perspiration: for example, top coat paints and lacquers used on toys, where ageing and mechanical wear and tear can cause paints that contain lead and cadmium to break into flakes that could be swallowed by children.
An overview of the actual Oeko-Tex testing criteria and limit values can be downloaded from the internet at: www.oeko-tex.com/limitvalues.