SAFEGUARDS | SoftlinesNO. 071/16

On March 10, 2016, The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced the approval of a Statement of Policy regarding the CPSC's enforcement of the requirement for a general conformity certificates (GCC) for adult wearing apparel that is exempt from testing under the Flammable Fabrics Act (FFA). The new policy will become effective on March 25, 2016.


The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) was enacted on August 14, 2008. Section 102(A) of the CPSIA requires that all manufacturers, importers or private labelers of consumer products subject to a rule, standard, or ban enforced by the CPSC should issue a general conformity certificate (GCC) to certify that their product complies with all rules, bans standards or regulations applicable to the product, based on a test of each product or upon a reasonable testing program.

Detail of the new policy of enforcement discretion

According to this new policy, manufacturers, importer or private labelers will not be required to issue a GCC for those adult apparel made of fabric that is exempt from flammability testing under FFA pursuant to 16 CFR 1610.1 (d). However these products must still comply with all flammability requirements under the FFA.

According to 16 CFR 1610.1 (d), the following fabrics are exempted from the flammability testing:

  1. Plain surface fabrics, regardless of fiber content, weighing 2.6 ounces per square yard or more

  2. All fabrics, both plain surface and raised-fiber surface textiles, regardless of weight, made entirely from any of the following fibers or entirely from a combination of the following fibers: acrylic, modacrylic, nylon, olefin, polyester, wool.

This statement of policy and the enforcement discretion is limited to adult wearing apparel that is exempt from testing pursuant to 16 CFR 1610 (d).  For children’s apparel and sleepwear, manufacturers, importers or private labelers still need to issue Certification of children's products which must be based upon the results of third party testing in flammability.   

This new enforcement discretion will be effective on on March 25 2016. If the Commission becomes aware of unsafe products entering the market as a result of this statement of policy, it reserves the right to withdraw the policy prospectively with no less than 90 days' notice.

SGS Global Softlines has an extensive network of over 40 laboratories worldwide, with a strong team of committed professionals from multi-disciplinary backgrounds. Our internationally accredited state-of-the-art testing laboratories offer a comprehensive range of physical, chemical and functional testing 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

Reference: Statement of Policy on Enforcement Discretion Regarding General Conformity Certificates for Adult Wearing Apparel Exempt From Testing

For enquiries, please contact:

Louann Spirito
Director Technical Support, Softlines
t: +1 973 461 7919

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