Prohibited phthalates ...
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Prohibited phthalates found in toys

31 January 2012

The Swedish Chemicals Agency has had 28 toys analysed to check the content of nine plasticisers, known as phthalates, in soft plastic. The products were sent to an accredited laboratory for wet-chemical analysis.

Two dolls were found to contain high levels of the phthalate DEHP, which is prohibited in toys and childcare articles at levels in excess of 0.1 per cent. The dolls contained 17-19 per cent DEHP. DEHP is a substance that can affect the balance of certain hormones in the body and harm reproductive capacity.

–"Phthalates are continuously released from plastics, and exposure of children to them should therefore be avoided," says KemI inspector Camilla Westlund.

A halloween mask contained high levels of the phthalate DINP (above 14 per cent). This phthalate too is prohibited at levels in excess of 0.1 per cent in toys and childcare articles that can be put in the mouth. The halloween mask additionally contained DEHP at levels above the limit value of 0.1 per cent.

Other toys contained no or very low values of the phthalates they were analysed for.

Of the 28 toys analysed, eight were dolls, of which one was a make-up doll. Seven were sticky toys or what are known as pufferballs. Other products included halloween accessories, space hoppers and plastic animals.

All the companies have been informed that the check has been carried out and about the analytical results. They have also received information about the rules. The toys that contained non-permitted levels must be taken off the market. Under the Environmental Code, the Swedish Chemicals Agency is obliged to report suspected offences.


Camilla Westlund