SAFEGUARDS | Toys & Juvenile Products NO. 148/16

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The World Trade Organization (WTO) has circulated a notification announcing a draft regulation from the EU to retain the proposed migration limits for lead in toys. The provisions would become effective in Q3 2018.

In October 2014, we [1] informed you that the EU proposed to strengthen the migration limits for lead in all three toy material categories by 6 to 7-fold under the Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC (TSD).

On August 18, 2016, the World Trade Organization (WTO) circulated a communication from the EU to confirm the migration limits for lead in toys are to remain identical to those in the draft regulation attached to WTO document number 14-5405 [2] (notification G/TBT/N/EU/243) of September 25, 2014. The latest communication, under WTO document number 16-4443 [3] (notification G/TBT/N/EU/243 add.1), announced that the Scientific Committee for Health and Environmental Risks (SCHER) contended that the 2008 report relating to recommendations for the ‘tolerable daily intake’ from the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) were appropriate, and not as ‘weekly quantities’ in a 2015 erratum to the 2008 RIVM report.

The new draft regulation is expected to be adopted in Q1 2017 and the provisions would take effect 18 months after publication in the Official Journal; Q3 2018.   

Highlights of lead migration limits falling under the TSD and the draft regulation under WTO document 16-4443 are summarized in Table 1

Table 1: Migration Limit for Lead (mg/kg) 

Toy Material
Category I (Dry, brittle, powder like or pliable) Category II (Liquid or sticky) Category II (Scraped-off) Effective Date
Toy Safety Directive (TSD) 13.5 3.4 160 July 2013
WTO Document 16-4443 2.0 0.5 23 Q3 2018

Table 2: Definitions and examples of toy materials

Toy Material Category Toy material Example
I Dry, brittle, powder-like or pliable
  • Chalk, compressed paint tablets, crayons, plaster of Paris, magic sand, modelling compounds and plasticine.
  • Oven hardened PVC modelling compounds and bouncing putties.
II Liquid or sticky toy
  • Bubble solutions, finger paints, liquid adhesives, poster paints and slimes
III Scraped-off
  • Ceramics, glass, metals and metal alloys, textiles and wood.
  • Elastomers, leatherettes, polymers and surface coating materials.
  • Other materials such as bones, leather and natural sponges

SGS offers a wide range of services to ensure that your products comply with the EU Toy Safety Directive. We offer training, safety/risk assessment, technical documentation check, labelling review, testing according to harmonised standards, SVHC screening, inspections and audits. With the largest global network of toy experts and testing facilities around the world - around 20 toy labs worldwide including 3 EU Notified Bodies (France, Germany and Netherlands), 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
t: +852 2774 7420

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