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AATCC collaborates with SGS and other industry stakeholders to draft textile face covering guidance.

SAFEGUARDS | Personal and Protective EquipmentNO. 093/20

 SG 09320 Mask

On June 1, 2020, the American Association of Textile Chemists & Colorists (AATCC), a professional association and Standards Developing Organization released a draft guidance document in the form of AATCC Monograph, AATCC MXXX 2020 Guidance and Considerations for General Purpose Textile Face Coverings: Adult. Initiated by SGS, the draft was compiled by an ad-hoc task group comprised of AATCC, SGS, North Carolina State University and other industry experts in textile research, manufacturing, filtration, safety and standardization areas. It is believed to be the first of its kind in US and Canadian markets to assist the textile industry in developing and manufacturing adult textile face coverings that adhere to the United States’ Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) recommendations given in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as other relevant US and Canada regulations.

The goal of this monograph is to provide considerations and recommendations intended to help manufacturers efficiently design and produce general purpose (non-medical) face coverings. 

This document contains voluntary guidance and practical considerations for:

  • Regulatory considerations
  • Fit and sizing considerations
  • Material and construction considerations
  • Particle filtration considerations
  • Breathing resistance considerations
  • Laundering and service life considerations
  • Tie and ear loop considerations
  • Product labeling and marking considerations

A critical component in this monograph is washing and drying instructions, as the manufacturer must decide on:

  • Care instructions, and 
  • Service life: the maximum number of washes before a mask should be replaced

Face-covering protective performance standards are also recommended in the guidance. The face covering should retain a minimum particle filtration of 70% (@ 3-micron) and a maximum breathing resistance as specified by the selected method.

The draft version can be found on the AATCC website.

Founded in 1921, AATCC is a technical and scientific society with thousands of individual, corporate and student members in approximately 60 countries worldwide. Its members represent a broad spectrum of expertise in textile research, manufacturing, design and marketing. The Association’s primary objectives are education, technical applications and research, and communication. 

SGS is committed to providing information about development in regulations for consumer products as complimentary services. Through a global network of laboratories, SGS provides a wide range of services including physical/mechanical testing, analytical testing and consultancy work for technical and non-technical parameters applicable to a comprehensive range of consumer products. Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information.

NEXT STEP:

AATCC MXXX-2020 Guidance and Considerations for General Purpose Textile Face Coverings: Adult, is expected to be published officially in July, 2020. 

Participating in the research and development of the guidance, SGS can assist manufacturers with properly utilizing the guidance to evaluate their covering, through testing of the materials, inspection of the production lots, with possibility of additional critical tests from the production lot.

For enquiries, please contact:

Matthew McGarrity
Hardlines Technical Manager
t: +9738978889

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