Restrictions may limit or ban the manufacture, selling or use of substances. A restriction applies to any substance on its own, in a mixture or in an article, including those that do not require registration. It can also apply to imports.

Today 60 restrictions are in force - many for use in consumer goods. Oftentimes a restriction is published with immediate effect, so there is little time for businesses to adapt.

Possible ban on biocides used as in-can preservatives

Under REACH, certain biocides used as in-can preservatives (various isothazolinones, formaldehyde releasers) are going to be banned from use. Industry associations at European and national levels are co-operating on this highly sensitive issue, which will require months if not years of active public affairs engagement.

The adhesive tape and related industries wish to convey to EU authorities that some biocides are necessary in formulations, e.g. those of adhesives, because they prevent hazardous dispersions. The objective is to demonstrate that the number of preservatives which can be used for these dispersions is not significant when compared to the problems created through their blanket restriction. Downstream users, such as those attached to the auto industry, are aware of the pending legislation and increasingly ask for formulation information from companies further up the supply chain.

FEICA, the European adhesive and sealant association, along with other bodies, recently issued a position document to the EU Commission and Member State Competent Authorities for Biocides entitled “A holistic approach to the evaluation of in-can preservatives”.

For more information on this subject, visit ECHA's completed activities on restriction.

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