31. 01. 2024


Exemptions for the new European REACH restriction on formaldehyde

On July 17, 2023, the introduction of Regulation (EU) 2023/1464 was officially announced, implementing the long-anticipated REACH restriction concerning formaldehyde. This process was initiated by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) on behalf of the European Commission in 2017. The modification of Annex XVII of Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006, containing active restrictions, was carried out through the inclusion of entry 77.

Starting from August 6, 2026, the recent regulation came into effect, it will be prohibited to introduce articles (a term used by REACH to refer to products, including semi-finished ones) with a formaldehyde emission level exceeding 0.062 mg/m3, specifically for furniture and wood-based products.
This limit precisely corresponds to half of the E1 emission class, as specified in Appendix B of the UNI EN 13986 standard.

The Annex to the regulation details the test conditions to be followed. For products other than furniture and wood articles, a limit of 0.080 mg/m3 is set, with varying adjustment times in some cases.

The restriction aims to ensure a significant reduction in formaldehyde emissions in the environment, concurrently promoting consumer safety and public health protection.

The regulation has exclusions, which CATAS want to emphasize are not the same as those known in previous years under CARB and later under TSCA Title VI, in the following cases:

  1. articles where formaldehyde or substances releasing formaldehyde are exclusively naturally present in the materials used for their production;

  2. articles intended solely for outdoor use under predictable conditions;

  3. construction articles used exclusively outside the building envelope and vapor barrier, which do not emit formaldehyde into the indoor air;

  4. articles intended exclusively for industrial or professional use, unless the formaldehyde emissions from them result in predictable public exposure conditions;

  5. articles subject to the restriction under entry 72;

  6. biocides within the scope of Regulation (EU) No. 528/2012;

  7. devices subject to Regulation (EU) 2017/745;

  8. personal protective equipment within the scope of Regulation (EU) 2016/425;

  9. articles intended to come into direct or indirect contact with foodstuffs falling within the scope of Regulation (EC) No. 1935/2004;

  10. used articles.

For info:
Daniele Bergamasco
+39 0432 747249