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Chemical company urges vigilance in supply compliance

03 May 2018

As the EU’s latest chemical regulation is almost upon us, speciality chemical supplier, Airedale Chemical, is urging cleaning companies to make preparations and reconsider their chemical consumption.

Ahead of the final phase of implementation, which is 1 June 2018, Daniel Marr, head of marketing at Airedale Chemical, is advising those in the cleaning industry to address the issue to ensure operations continue to run efficiently:

REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals) covers all chemicals used on their own or as part of formulas within the EU including all applications in the industrial and consumer sectors.

The final deadline for the EU’s latest regulation on chemical use is looming and aims for all chemicals imported into the EU or European Economic Area to be registered, tested and authorised by the ECHA (European Chemicals Agency). It’s likely to affect businesses of any size in almost all industries, including those who manufacture cleaning solutions whether the end-use is industrial or domestic.

Whether businesses are small or a multi-national, REACH needs to be taken into account; unfortunately it does not discriminate. Although there are a few exceptions in the case of some substances such as waste, radioactive material and those used in the interests of defense, almost everything else is likely to be affected in some way by REACH regulations.

It’s anticipated that some chemical suppliers are likely to decide against applying for REACH approval due to financial or time restraints so it would be a mistake to assume your supplier will be registering the substances you rely on. Now is the time to check if your supplier intends to continue with its full repertoire of chemicals in order to keep your operations running seamlessly.

It’s essential to be prepared to make changes in your process or even investigate whether you could consolidate your chemical usage making it more economical and streamlined; a good first step is agreeing whose responsibility it is internally to manage the process.

We Airedale Chemical recommends taking the following measurements to ensure your business remains compliant:

  • Audit the chemicals in use at your business; some downstream users can be unaware of the specific chemicals handled in their industrial activity
  • Ensure the chemicals you buy have a registration number where required
  • If a number is not available, check the ECHA database for registration status
  • Do not presume your supplier will register all your regular products and ask for confirmation that it is being handled, or that it is exempt
  • Investigate if your chemical supplies can be sourced from an alternative, REACH registered supplier
  • Can your mixtures be made up with alternative substances? If so, look into formulations which are not reliant on chemicals affected by REACH

Although June 2018 is set as the final deadline it is likely that REACH will remain an important issue and an evolving matter for some time and the key to maintaining a smooth-running operation will be two-way communication throughout the supply chain between upstream and downstream users.

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