Here at Toxnot, Product Compliance is one of our most important areas of focus. Keeping up with compliance regulations can be a difficult and daunting task, so staying up to date for our customers is a priority. Being a trusted resource in automated product compliance is always top of mind. Here we've tried to summarize the most important takeaways for the compliance regulations covered in Toxnot and how we can help you streamline your compliance needs.
What is Product Compliance?
At its core, product compliance is the process of ensuring that your product meets all the regulatory requirements that are applicable. Of course, regulations and standards vary widely depending on the product and the regulations themselves are in a constant flux. Regulations fall into several general categories: chemical substance regulations, product-specific regulations, and labeling requirements. The substance lists, product categories, and label requirements are constantly evolving based on chemical research, new substance information, and market demands. This element of change is why it can be so hard to keep up with product compliance.
In Toxnot, our compliance features allow users to store substance data and compliance determinations in the system for CA Proposition 65, REACH, RoHS, Conflict Minerals, and soon, SCIP.
California Proposition 65 is a law that was passed by Californian voters in 1986 and is overseen by California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA). The goal of this regulation was to protect drinking water sources from toxic chemicals that cause cancer and birth defects while also reducing and eliminating exposure to consumers through the implementation of warning labels for products that contain these harmful substances. OEHHA maintains a list of toxic chemicals that is available to the public (and is regularly maintained in Toxnot). California Proposition 65 compliance is required to sell products in California.
In 2012, the Securities and Exchange Commission adopted a new rule in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. This regulation now requires companies to publicly disclose their use of conflict minerals originating from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) or an adjoining country. These minerals include gold, tin, tantalum, and tungsten and can often be referred to a 3TG metals. These raw materials have been found to finance conflict in the DRC and this compliance regulation helps reduce the funding that perpetuates this regional violence.
EU REACH is a European directive that stands for Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals and is overseen by the European Commission. This regulation was established in 2007 and was created to replace previous legislation for toxic chemicals within the EU. The goal of EU REACH is to ensure a high level of protection for human health and the environment while also promoting alternative test methods and the free circulation of substances to further boost innovation. The EU maintains REACH chemical lists that are available to the public (and are regularly maintained in Toxnot).
SCIP is a database for information on Substances of Concern In Products (SCIP) and is part of the Waste Framework Directive (WFD). WFD, like REACH, is an European Union (EU) piece of legislation that creates a structure in which manufactured products are managed and reported. REACH aims to improve protection and reduce risk of human and environmental exposure posed by chemicals. WFD on the other hand addresses the adverse impact of waste generation and improving efficient use of resources to promote the transition to a circular economy. All parts, materials, articles, and objects placed on the EU market containing a substance of very high concern on the REACH Candidate List in a concentration above 0.1% w/w are required to submit SCIP notification.
RoHS stands for Restriction of Hazardous Substances (also known as, Directive 2002/95/EC) and is a regulation that was enacted in July of 2006 by the European Union. This standard specifically restricts hazardous substances found in electrical and electronic products, with 10 substances on this restricted list and associated allowance limits for these substances (i.e. <1000 ppm). RoHS exists to prevent hazardous substances from entering the environment and polluting landfills, while also protecting people from exposure during manufacturing and recycling. Any business that sell or distributes electrical and electronic products to EU countries must be RoHS compliant.
Automating your Product Compliance
Traditionally, product compliance has been achieved through countless hours of manual work, dozens of spreadsheets, and reading through pages and pages of dense technical jargon. For this reason, meeting compliance needs is usually very time intensive, very expensive, or both. Transparency regulations are expected to increase as we usher in a new administration. Compliance is not only an ethical obligation, but also a financial investment. Consumers, investors, and supply chains have started to favor companies and products that meet and exceed transparency and health regulations. As we sit on the horizon of sweeping changes in sustainability, Toxnot can be a compliance solution. All it takes is importing your product bill of materials (that are completely private to you) and you instantly have compliance data. Toxnot can also help you survey your suppliers to fill in any gaps in your compliance data. Once finished, you can even generate compliance letters to demonstrate your compliance and commitment to transparency to your customers. And the best part - Toxnot maintains all the above compliance lists for you and you will be automatically notified any time your products are affected by a changing regulation. Gathering, assessing, maintaining, and sharing your compliance information has never been easier. Really.
If you're interested in a compliance demo of Toxnot, schedule some time with us here: Schedule a Demo
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