Skip to Menu Skip to Search Contact Us Skip to Content

SAFEGUARDS | Toys & Juvenile Products NO. 220/15

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a final rule to exempt unfinished and untreated wood in toys from testing for the eight heavy metals falling under ASTM F963. The new rule will take effect on January 19, 2016.

In July 2015, we informed you [1] that the US CPSC had issued a proposed direct final rule (DFR) exempting unfinished and untreated wood in toys from third party testing for the 8 heavy metals (antimony, arsenic, barium, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury and selenium) per requirements in ASTM F963 ‘Standard Consumer Safety Specification for Toy Safety. This DFR would be withdrawn if significant adverse comments were received by mid-August 2015. The CPSC also published a companion notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) for wood determination under ASTM F963 in the same issue of the Federal Register (DFR, 80 FR 42376; NPR, 80 FR 42438)

In September 2015, we informed you [2] that the CPSC had withdrawn this proposed DFR due to receipt of significant adverse comments. The CPSC proceeded with the rulemaking by issuing an NPR that was published simultaneously with the DFR 80 RF 54417 of September 10, 2015.

On December 17, 2015, the CPSC issued a final rule in the Federal Register [3] exempting unfinished and untreated trunk wood in toys from third party testing for the 8 heavy metals that are in ASTM F963. This final rule creates a new regulation,16 CFR Part 1251, titled "Toys: Determination Regarding Heavy Elements Limits for Unfinished and Untreated Wood".

According to the definitions in the final rule, unfinished and untreated wood is defined as

  • Wood harvested from the trunks of trees with no added surface coatings such as paint, polyurethane, shellac or varnish, and
  • Wood substrates that do not contain other materials such as antifungal agents, dyes, insecticides, preservatives and stains.

Unfinished and untreated wood does not include manufactured or engineered wood such as pressed wood, plywood, particle boards or fiberboards.

The new rule will take effect on January 19, 2016. Highlights of the final rule are summarized in Table 1.

Table 1

16 CFR Part 1251

Toys: Determination Regarding Heavy Elements Limits for Unfinished and Untreated Wood

Toy Standard Scope Soluble Heavy Metal Remark Effective Date
ASTM F963 Toys containing unfinished and untreated wood Antimony, arsenic, barium, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury and selenium Third-party testing not required January 19, 2016

Throughout our global network, SGS offers consultation and comprehensive testing services (physical/mechanical, chemical, flammability, electrical safety, etc) covering the full spectrum of international product safety and regulatory standards for a wide range of toys. Our laboratories are internationally recognized by major industry associations, accreditation bodies and authorities. With the largest global network of toy experts and testing facilities around the world (including 3 EU Notified Bodies and about 40 CPSC-Accepted Testing Laboratories), SGS is the partner to trust. Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information or visit our website.

For enquiries, please contact:

Hing Wo Tsang
Global Toys and Juvenile Products
t: +852 2774 7420

Stay on top of regulatory changes within your industry: subscribe to SafeGuardS!

© SGS Group Management SA – 2015– All rights reserved - SGS is a registered trademark of SGS Group Management SA. This is a publication of SGS, except for 3rd parties’ contents submitted or licensed for use by SGS. SGS neither endorses nor disapproves said 3rd parties contents. This publication is intended to provide technical information and shall not be considered an exhaustive treatment of any subject treated. It is strictly educational and does not replace any legal requirements or applicable regulations. It is not intended to constitute consulting or professional advice. The information contained herein is provided “as is” and SGS does not warrant that it will be error-free or will meet any particular criteria of performance or quality. Do not quote or refer any information herein without SGS’s prior written consent.