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AFIRM Releases 2024 Restricted Substances List (RSL) Guidance for Suppliers

SafeGuardSSoftlinesFebruary 12, 2024

SG 31/24

On February 1, 2024, the Apparel and Footwear International RSL Management (AFIRM) Group released its 2024 RSL Guidance for suppliers. AFIRM is a global organization offering essential resources to support the implementation of sustainable and self-governing RSL throughout the apparel and footwear supply chain. It provides a very useful RSL toolkit for brands and retailers.

AFIRM 2024 Restricted Substance List (RSL) provides guidance to the supply chain for improving quality and safety while reducing environmental impact. It provides the user with a list of substances of concern, CAS numbers, limits, test methods, legislated reporting limits and information on where these substances are commonly used in the industry. Recommendations focus on substances restricted by the apparel and footwear industry working group.

The AFIRM RSL outlines substances under legislated limits globally at the time of publication. AFIRM urges suppliers across the entire apparel and footwear supply chain to utilize the detailed technical information in the RSL Guidance, which serves as a valuable reference for understanding global limits and testing methods concerning restricted substances that might be present in apparel and footwear production processes.

By educating the end-to-end supply chain to follow the guidelines in the RSL, brands can enhance overall supply chain sustainability and safety. Additionally, utilizing the RSL can act as a starting point to meet all the chemical restrictions required by AFIRM member companies. This standardized approach streamlines testing processes, making it easier for AFIRM brands to share data, reduce costs and increase efficiency.

Overview of major changes:

  • Test methods and reporting limits added/updated
  • New in 2024 additional notes and information
  • Existing list expanded with new substances

The launch of the 2024 AFIRM RSL highlights AFIRM's commitment to promoting sustainability, transparency and collaboration in the apparel and footwear supply chain. By offering a comprehensive toolkit and aligning with global legislated limits and industry best practices, AFIRM empowers stakeholders to make informed decisions that contribute to reducing the use and impact of harmful substances.


The AFIRM RSL is available at

SGS Softlines has an extensive network of more than 40 laboratories worldwide, with a team of committed professionals from multi-disciplinary backgrounds. Our internationally accredited state-of-the-art test laboratories offer a comprehensive range of physical, chemical and functional test services for components, materials and finished products. We help your company ensure quality, performance and compliance with international, industrial and regulatory standards worldwide. Discover more at

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For further information, please contact:

Min Zhu

Dr. Min Zhu

Consumer and Retail — Softlines
US & Canada Softlines Business Head

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