REACH stands for Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals and is a regulation of the European Union, adopted to improve the protection of human health and the environment from the risks that can be posed by chemicals, while enhancing the competitiveness of the EU chemicals industry. It also promotes alternative methods for the hazard assessment of substances in order to reduce the number of tests on animals.
In principle, REACH applies to all substances, mixtures & articles; not only those used in industrial processes but also in our day-to-day lives. Therefore, the regulation has an impact on most companies across the EU.
Substances of Very High Concern (SVHC) pose serious risks to human health and the environment, which can:
- Cause cancer (carcinogenic)
- Cause genetic mutations (mutagenic)
- Be toxic to reproduction (reprotoxic)
- Have other harmful properties and remain in the environment for a long time (persistent & very persistent)
- Gradually build up in animals (bio-accumulative & very bio-accumlative)
- Substances of similar concern (e.g. endocrine disruptors)
REACH aims to control the use of such substances through authorization and restriction and obliges manufacturers and suppliers to use safer alternatives or technologies, within a reasonable timeframe and enhance the communication along the supply chain on the information of SVHC presence condition.
Additionally, the REACH framework may affect consumer products with regard to substance authorization according to Annex XIV or restriction according to Annex XVII, as well as Substances of Very High Concern (SVHC) notification according to Article 7, or declaration according to Article 33.
At SGS we offer innovative solutions for supply chain management and REACH SVHC testing for consumer products, helping you to achieve REACH compliance and improve your internal business processes.