REACH Compliance: What It Means for Businesses

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Since the European Union’s Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) regulation took into effect, manufacturers and importers have been required to comply with a range of obligations regarding their products’ contents. The regulation impacts diverse business sectors including companies that produce chemicals for their own use or sale and those that import chemical substances. 

What is the Purpose of REACH?

The EU regulation is meant to address the production and use of chemical substances and their possible effects on both human health and the environment. With this regulation, affected companies must register their chemical substances with the European Chemical Agency (ECHA). Also, manufacturers and importers are required to communicate information on chemicals throughout the supply chain to ensure awareness of information relating to health and product safety. Materials such as carcinogens, reproductive toxins, mutagens, as well as persistent, bio-accumulative, and toxic chemicals are among those of “very high concern.” Enviropass REACH compliance consulting helps manufacturers and importers fulfill their regulatory obligations. Enviropass helps companies navigate the complexities of this regulation and guarantee compliance for their products. 

Companies Affected by the REACH Regulation

Any company that produces, imports, uses, or places a substance, mixture, or article on the EU market should comply with the REACH regulation. REACH covers EU manufacturers, including chemical suppliers, distributors, and downstream users, as well as EU companies that import products to the EU. Although the regulation does not directly affect non-EU companies that export chemical products into the EU customs territory, they should help their EU partners comply with regulations by appointing a REACH ONLY representative. This will allow them to conduct trade smoothly. 

How to Comply with REACH

To comply with the REACH regulations, companies must understand the requirements first. They must identify substances and tracking volumes, register substances, update material safety data sheets and produce extended (M)SDS, as well as communicate information about the substance. Also, they must check if any substances are restricted or require authorization. After classifying substances, companies should submit information to the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). 

The agency receives and assesses individual registrations in terms of their compliance. Different EU member states assess certain substances in regards to local concerns on human health and the environment. Then, ECHA evaluates a registered substance’s risk. If a given sample is found to have hazardous substances, ECHA can either decide t restrict the use or ban the substance altogether. But, if ECHA and supporting committees determine compliance, they will issue a certificate of REACH compliance after the registration process.