The ban covers six types of phthalates from use in items designed to be sucked by children under three. Its introduction followed two years of fierce debate between EU countries which grew out of Danish research suggesting health risks to children from ingesting phthalates leaching out of plasticised PVC toys such as baby teething rings.
A draft directive to permanently outlaw the use of phthalates in childcare items was proposed at the same time and is currently being debated in the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament (ENDS Daily 7 July). The current ban will continue in force until 5 December.
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