September 26, 2023
By Krystal Spickler, program manager, Supply Chain team, UL Solutions
On June 23, 2023, Health Canada published a Notice of Intent (NOI) proposing amendments to the Toys Regulations. The NOI’s changes include modernization of requirements pertaining to chemicals and toxicity (many of which Health Canada confirmed are original to the Regulations’ creation in 1970) and creation of new ones to address new concerns.
Changes look to address several aspects of the existing requirement, including:
- Acceptance of new toxicity data sources in Schedule 2, including human experience data and data obtained using the OECD Test Guidelines. Separate to this, Health Canada is also considering repealing Schedule 2 and instead levering good scientific practices and GHS hazard categories.
- Weight of evidence approaches under Schedule 3 for corrosives, irritants, and sensitizers—which would reduce need of animal testing.
- Amending the existing prohibition of boric acid and its salts to include maximum concentration limits for elemental or boric acid.
- Consideration of ISO 8124-3, ASTM F963, and EN 71-3 standards to address heavy metal migration across all substrates and changing the total limit for mercury through adoption of the same standards.
- Extending requirements for finger paints, including (but not limited to) adoption of existing standards’ requirements that address toxicity, irritation, sensitization, and corrosivity in addition to formulation requirements pertaining to colorants, preservatives, surfactants, etc.
- Incorporation of ASTM F963 to address risks posed by liquids, pastes, putties, gels, powders, and items of avian feather origin.
- New requirements for chemical toy sets that do not fit the existing Science Education Sets Regulations via incorporation of ISO 8124-11:2019.
Health Canada also addressed the incorporation of external standards by ambulatory reference (for example, ASTM, ISO, or EN standards) under the proposed changes. The NOI confirmed as standards are updated, those changes would become part of the Regulations and proposed a 180-day transition period from the date of revision.
Comments closed Sept. 21, 2023.
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