Proposed Amendment includes Flame Retardants in Children’s Products

flame retardantProposed amendment, House Bill 2934 (Decrease Unsafe Toxins Act), will amend the CPSIA to ban flame retardant chemicals from use in resilient filling materials in children’s products.

The proposed amendment would require manufacturers of children’s products which contain resilient filling materials, such as high chairs, strollers, infant walkers, booster seats, car seats, changing pads, floor play mats, highchair pads, highchairs, infant swings, bassinets, infant seats, infant bouncers, nursing pads, playards, playpen side pads, infant mattresses, infant mattress pads, and portable hook-on chairs to not contain more than 1,000 ppm of flame retardant chemicals.

Currently, strollers, infant carriers, and nursing pillows have been exempt from California’s Furniture Flammability Standard Technical Bulletin (TB117) since 2010 and the proposed revision of California’s (TB117-2013) includes a provision to exempt 17 more baby and infant products from the standard. This is due to the State agency’s understanding that these products do not present a significant fire hazard.

Since California has been the “de facto standard” for flammability in upholstered products, the bill is seen to bring into harmonization the changes in TB117 and the CPSIA.

Do you have questions about Flame Retardants in your product?

Jacoby Solutions provides consulting services for compliance related issues.

Contact Us Today if you need help in this area!

Making Green Claims with Regards to Your Products

environmental-marketing-claimsDo you make any green claims with your products? Three mattresses firms recently reached a settlement with the FTC and agreed to discontinue unsupported claims that their mattresses where free of volatile organic compounds (VOC’s).  VOC’s are carbon-containing compounds that may be harmful to human health and the environment.  The settlement prohibited the mattresses companies from claiming their products where free of VOC’s without competent and reliable scientific evidence that the mattresses actually contain either zero micrograms per cubic meter or no more than just a trace amount of VOC’s.

Environmental claims about products are becoming more and more prevalent especially with products sold to children under the age of 12 years.  These claims include things like; BPA free, Odor free, 100 percent natural materials, Phthalate free, etc.  These types of Environmental Benefit claims are closely scrutinized by the FTC and must be substantiated by competent and reliable scientific evidence.

When manufacturers and importers say a product is green and “free of” a chemical or substance, the product must not contain the chemical or substance or have only a trace amount.  The “trace amount” test is met if;

  • The level of the chemical or substance is less than that which would be found as an acknowledged trace contaminant or background level
  • The chemical or substance’s presence does not cause material harm that consumers typically associate with it
  • The chemical or substance has not been added intentionally

The FTC’s Green Guides are a valuable resource when analyzing whether a “green claim” is adequately supported.

Do you have questions about your Environmental Benefit claim related your product or packaging?

Jacoby Solutions provides consulting services for compliance related issues.

Contact Us Today if you need help in this area!

FTC to host Care Labeling Rule roundtable

Care-LabelingThe Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will host a public round table to discuss proposed revisions to its Care Labeling Rule on October 1, 2013 in Washington, DC.

The Rule requires manufacturers and importers to attach labels with care instructions for dry cleaning washing, bleaching, drying and ironing of garments and certain piece goods.

The round table will focus on the following:

  • a proposal to allow manufacturers and importers to include professional instructions for wet cleaning – an environmentally friendly alternative to dry cleaning – on labels if the garment can be professionally wet cleaned and on whether the FTC should require a wet cleaning instruction for such garments
  • discussion on the differences between the care symbols of ASTM International and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), whether labels should identify ISO symbols as such if used to comply with the Rule, the change in the meaning of the circle P symbol in the ASTM system, and consumer understanding of symbols.
  • how to clarify what constitutes a reasonable basis for care instructions.

The round table will be held on October 1, 2013, from 9:15-3:45, in the FTC’s Satellite Building Conference Center at 601 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Washington, DC.

Requests to participate as a panelist must be received by September 3,  2013. Written comments regarding the agenda topics, the issues discussed by the panelists at the round table, or the issues raised in comments received in response to the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking must be received by October 15, 2013.

Do you have questions about the Care Labeling Rule or need help with labeling  related issues regarding product or packaging?

Jacoby Solutions provides consulting services for compliance related issues.

Contact Today if you need help in this area!

Proposed changes to Prop. 65 warnings focus of upcoming OEHHA workshop

A public pre-regulatory workshop has been scheduled for July 30, 2013 by California EPA’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) to discuss “the content of a regulation that would address Proposition 65 (Prop. 65) warnings”.  If adopted as proposed it would either supplement or replace existing OEHHA regulations governing Proposition 65 warnings and conform to any statutory changes enacted.  California Governor Jerry Brown as indicated his intent to amend the law this year.

The OEHHA is considering the following changes; (a) requiring information in all warnings of the health effects which the chemical listed, how a person will be exposed and “simple information such as washing hands” on how to avoid or reduce exposure, (b) means to provide additional information concerning exposure to the chemical(s) listed through a website or other generally accessible medium.


Example of Label that would satisfy the proposed changes

Warning: Using this product will expose you to lead, a chemical known to cause cancer, birth defects and other harm to a developing baby. Wash hands after touching this product.

For more information go to:


Jacoby Solutions Launches CPSIA Ready, The First and Only Product-Centric CPSIA Compliance Solution

Proprietary software platform helps manufacturers and importers reduce the time, cost and resources needed to be compliant

Malvern, PA (PRWEB) June 25, 2013

Jacoby Solutions has launched CPSIA Ready, a cloud-based software platform and services solution giving manufacturing and importing companies the ability to quickly and effectively comply with all aspects of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA). Developed by a veteran juvenile products distributor, this product-centric solution was designed with business operations and continually evolving compliance regulations in mind. CPSIA Ready helps customers embed compliance into operations so they can easily become and remain compliant across all of the CPSIA’s requirements.

The U.S. Government recently and dramatically changed its compliance requirements for product manufacturers and importers. Three recent Settlement Agreements issued by the CPSC require the companies to set up an expansive compliance system including: (1) proof of written compliance standards and policies, (2) retention of all compliance-related records for a minimum of five years; (3) assignment of a senior-level compliance manager/officer; (4) a confidential and operational process for employees to be able to report compliance related questions or issues to a compliance manager/officer; and (5) mandatory training on company compliance-related policies and procedures for all applicable employees and stakeholders.

“Compliance is no longer about testing. Companies must ‘exercise due care,’ across many of the CPSC’s mandates,” says Bill Jacoby, principal of Jacoby Solutions. “With CPSIA Ready and our on-line compliance training program, CPSIA U, companies can easily achieve compliance with reduced time, cost and resources. CPSIA Ready also tracks and stores product information, and provides easy due process for employees to achieve mandatory training on various elements of the compliance law,” Jacoby continues.

CPSIA Ready notifies companies of new compliance regulations and provides manufacturers and importers with a system that enables them to:

  • Quickly create and send compliance certificates to retailers/distributors;
  • Create and manage test plans by product and manufacturing facility;
  • Manage and document material changes within products;
  • Centralize storage of test reporting and compliance documentation;
  • Provide access to a company compliance portal with an e-learning portal for mandatory training; and
  • Reduce documentation storage costs in a tightly secured, cloud-based environment.


“The financial, operational and managed-risk benefits of working with CPSIA Ready are unprecedented in today’s manufacturing industry. We’ve combined our comprehensive experience with implementing on-going compliance requirements with the CPSIA, with our experience improving operational effectiveness of our clients’ businesses, to give CPSIA Ready clients a total compliance solution that also offers unparalleled customer support options. From our customized initial training programs, to our on-demand, technical consultants, we’ve made CPSIA Ready an extremely user-friendly and easy to implement and use solution,” explains Bill Jacoby.

Flexible pricing programs enable CPSIA Ready to create the exact solution to fit the needs of every organization, whether companies need a five-user license, a ten-user license, on-line training and documentation for employees, or need to create a company compliance plan. For more information, or to schedule a virtual walkthrough of the platform, please visit

About Jacoby Solutions:

Jacoby Solutions is a professional consulting firm with a focus on providing a one-stop resource for assistance in making sure a company is “Operationally Ready” for CPSIA compliance. Specializing in the Juvenile, Toy and Consumer Goods space, Jacoby Solutions provides companies with the technology and knowledge necessary to adhere to the current and impending compliance mandates related to CPSIA.

Ross Stores Agrees to $3.9 Million Civil Penalty, Internal Compliance Improvements for Failure to Report Drawstrings in Children’s Upper Outerwear

Release Date: June 21, 2013

Release Number: 13-224

WASHINGTON, D.C.-The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)

announced today that Ross Stores Inc., of Pleasanton, Calif., has agreed to

pay a $3.9 million civil penalty.  The penalty agreement has been accepted

provisionally by the Commission in a 3-0 vote.


The settlement resolves CPSC staff’s charges that from January 2009 to

February 2012, Ross knowingly failed to report to CPSC immediately, as

required by federal law, that it sold or held for sale, about 23,000

children’s upper outerwear garments with drawstrings at the neck or waist.

In February 1996, CPSC issued guidelines (which were incorporated into a

consensus industry voluntary standard in 1997) to help prevent children from

strangling or getting entangled on neck and waist drawstrings in upper

garments, such as sweatshirts and jackets.


In May 2006, the Commission posted a letter on its website which stated that

staff considered children’s upper outerwear with drawstrings at the hood or

neck to be defective and present a substantial risk of injury to young

children.   In July 2011, based on the 1996 CPSC guidelines and the 1997

voluntary standard, CPSC issued a final rule which designates the hazards

presented by drawstrings in children’s upper outerwear as substantial

product hazards.


Ross’s distribution of some children’s garments occurred during the same

period of time as CPSC’s investigation and negotiation of a 2009 civil

penalty.  The $500,000 penalty that Ross paid in 2009 was to settle staff

charges that it failed to report four series of children’s upper outerwear

drawstring garments distributed between 2006 and 2008.  Ross’s distribution

of the other garments in this matter occurred either partially or entirely

after the effective date of CPSC’s Final Rule. There have been no reported

injuries associated with the recalled garments.


In addition to paying a monetary penalty, Ross has agreed to implement and

maintain a compliance program designed to ensure compliance with the

reporting requirements of Section 15(b) of the Consumer Product Safety Act

and the Final Rule.  Ross also agreed to enhance its existing compliance

policies by ensuring that its ongoing program contains written standards and

policies, a mechanism for confidential employee reporting of

compliance-related questions or concerns, and appropriate communication of

company compliance policies to all employees through training programs. Ross

has designed and implemented a system of internal controls and procedures to

ensure that the firm’s reporting to the Commission is timely, truthful,

complete, accurate, and in accordance with applicable law.  The company will

also take steps to ensure that prompt disclosure is made to management of

any significant deficiencies or material weaknesses in the design or

operation of such internal controls.


The Commission, in cooperation with Ross and/or other firms that

manufactured, imported, or distributed the Garments, announced recalls of

the garments listed below between March 2010 and May 2012:



Children’s Apparel Network, Ltd. Girls’ hooded sweater with neck



Byer California Girls’ cargo pocket jacket with neck and waist drawstrings

Puma North America Inc.     Youth training jacket with waist drawstrings

LA Fashion Hub Inc. Girls’ winter jacket with neck drawstrings

Umbro Boy’s jacket with waist drawstrings

Hot Chocolate Boy’s jogging suit with waist drawstrings

Bonded Apparel Boy’s Hooded jacket with neck drawstrings

Me Jane Louise Paris Ltd Girl’s fur hood bubble fleece with waist

drawstrings and Fur hooded bubble jacket with waist drawstrings

LANY Group LLC Girls’ terry hooded sweatshirt with neck drawstrings

YMI Jeanswear Girls’ hooded sweatshirt with neck drawstrings


Federal law requires manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to report to

CPSC immediately (within 24 hours) after obtaining information reasonably

supporting the conclusion that a product contains a defect which could

create a substantial product hazard, creates an unreasonable risk of serious

injury or death, or fails to comply with any consumer product safety rule or

any other rule, regulation, standard, or ban enforced by CPSC.


In agreeing to the settlement, Ross denies staff charges that it knowingly

failed to inform the Commission about the garments, as required by CPSA



Statement of Chairman Inez M. Tenenbaum on the Commission Decision to

Approve Provisionally a Civil Penalty Settlement with Ross Stores, Inc.


June 21, 2013


On June 19, 2013, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC or the

Commission) provisionally approved a civil penalty settlement with retailer

Ross Stores, Inc., to resolve CPSC staff allegations that Ross committed

prohibited acts by failing to inform the Commission of Ross’s continued sale

of children’s garments with drawstrings, which pose a substantial risk of

injury to children due to the risk of entanglement and strangulation.  The

settlement requires Ross to pay a monetary penalty of $3.9 million and, just

as important, to take meaningful measures to reduce the risk of future

noncompliance through implementation of significantly enhanced compliance

procedures and internal controls.  After a review of the specific facts

presented in this case and a careful consideration of the civil penalty

factors, I voted to approve the settlement.


During my tenure as Chairman of the CPSC, my colleague Commissioner Robert

S. Adler and I have written together and separately regarding the need for

civil penalties to truly serve the policy objectives of deterring violations

and promoting compliance with the law, particularly in light of the

increased penalty amounts Congress authorized in the Consumer Product Safety

Improvement Act of 2008.  This settlement reflects the goals and importance

of our enhanced authorities, and I commend the CPSC staff for this result.

This settlement is also a reminder to the regulated community that the

Commission will use every tool at its disposal to keep consumers and their

families safe from unreasonable risks of injury.


Ross is a repeat violator.  In 2009, it paid a civil penalty of $500,000 for

violating the same law, Section 15 of the Consumer Product Safety Act

(CPSA).  Neither the fine nor the supposed remedial measures Ross

implemented on its own initiative following that settlement was sufficient

to prevent the continued sale of defective garments.  Vendors who were

contractually obligated to provide compliant products continuously failed to

do so; internal policies prohibiting the purchase, inventory, and sale of

garments with drawstrings were equally ineffective.  Regardless of what

Ross’s management may have wanted to believe about the effectiveness of

their policies, they clearly did not work.  Moreover, the fact that Ross did

not design, manufacture, or import the garments did not relieve it of the

obligation to ensure that they comply with all applicable safety statutes

and regulations.


As part of this settlement, Ross has agreed to maintain a vastly improved

compliance program designed to prevent the sale of garments with drawstrings

and to ensure timely reporting, if necessary, under Section 15 of the CPSA.

This compliance program, similar to others the Commission has begun to

require as a warranted condition of settlement, includes the following key

elements: (i) written standards and policies, (ii) whistle-blower

protections, (iii) compliance training programs, (iv) management oversight

of compliance, and (v) five-year record retention requirements.


This case clearly demonstrates that policies cannot exist solely on paper;

individuals must be charged with and held accountable for carrying them out.

It is my hope and expectation that the message we are sending with the

substantial fine and the compliance requirements in this agreement will

increase the likelihood that Ross-and other firms-will not only make the

right decision next time they are confronted with whether to report a safety

issue, but also-and more importantly for consumer safety-will take all

necessary steps to ensure they produce and market only compliant products,

thus obviating the need for any reporting at all.


Harper Government Announces New Fines to Strengthen the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act

OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – June 4, 2013) – Today, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, announced the Harper Government has introduced new fines of up to $25,000 per day for companies who violate orders under the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act (CCPSA). The Administrative Monetary Penalties (Consumer Products) Regulations coming into force provide a flexible and responsive enforcement approach for dealing with specific incidents of non-compliance with an order made under the Act, such as refusing to comply with a recall order.

“Canadian consumers expect the products they pick up on store shelves to be safe for them and their families,” said Minister Aglukkaq. “By introducing significant fines for companies who violate orders to recall unsafe products, our Government is ensuring that companies who break the law will pay the price.”

Penalties are calculated based on the Administrative Monetary Penalties (Consumer Products) Regulations. They reflect the seriousness of the violation and past violation history of the person or company. The maximum penalties range from $5,000, (for a violation committed by an individual or a non-profit corporation, for non-commercial purposes), to $25,000, (in any other case). These numbers represent daily penalties – meaning that the financial burden on the company can increase with each passing day until the matter is resolved.

“We all share an interest in making sure that Canadians are protected from unsafe consumer products,” said Louise Logan President and CEO of Parachute. “Today’s announcement by Minister Aglukkaq brings in new measures to support compliance with the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act. Canadian parents now have further reassurance that the products they’re buying won’t harm their children.”

Typically, industry voluntarily takes action to address unsafe products. Administrative monetary penalties only come into effect when a company does not comply with government orders to recall a product within specified time frames, or orders to take other measures such as stopping the manufacturing, importation, sale or advertising of a non-compliant product.

“In most cases industry shares our concern for having safe products on the Canadian marketplace,” concluded Minister Aglukkaq. “These penalties will zero in on companies and organizations who won’t take action to protect Canadians from dangerous products.”

Également disponible en français

Health Canada news releases are available on the Internet at


Administrative Monetary Penalties (Consumer Products) Regulations

What are the Administrative Monetary Penalties (Consumer Products) Regulations?

The Administrative Monetary Penalties (Consumer Products) Regulations are a key component of the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act (CCPSA). They provide a flexible and responsive enforcement approach for dealing with specific incidents of non-compliance with an order made under the Act, such as refusing to comply with a recall order.

The Regulations prescribe the time and manner in which a monetary penalty under the CCPSA is calculated, modified, or paid, as well as the manner in which certain documents must be provided.

Health Canada expects that the financial penalties issued under the Regulations will encourage compliance with the CCPSA and its requirements over the long term.

When is an Administrative Monetary Penalty issued?

Typically, industry voluntarily abides by Health Canada’s product safety recommendations. Administrative monetary penalties only come into effect when the government orders a company to recall a product or orders to take other measures such as stopping the manufacturing, importation, sale or advertising of a non-compliant product, and the company does not comply within the specified timeframes.

What are the penalties under the Regulations?

Penalties are calculated in accordance with the Regulations and reflect both the seriousness of the violation and any past violation history of the person or company. The maximum penalties range from $5,000, (for a violation committed by an individual or a non-profit corporation, for non-commercial purposes), to $25,000, (in any other case).

Each day that an incident of non-compliance is not addressed represents a separate violation of the Act – meaning that the financial burden on the company can increase with each passing day until the matter is resolved.

Media Inquiries:

Health Canada

(613) 957-2983

Office of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq

Federal Minister of Health

(613) 957-0200

Public Enquiries:

(613) 957-2991

1-866 225-0709


Banned toxin list to add flame retardant

As recently seen in the United States, more pressure to ban the use of flame or fire retardant chemicals in consumer products continues now on an international stage.  These chemicals will likely be added to the list of toxic substances banned under an international treaty to protect human health from pollutants.Flame_Retardant

The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (Convention) is a global treaty that aims to protect human health and the environment from the effects of persistent organic pollutants (POPs). The Convention has a range of control measures to reduce and, where feasible, eliminate the release of POPs, including emissions of unintentionally produced POPs such as dioxins.

Officials from countries that have signed the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants were to hold a three-day meeting from Tuesday in Geneva, and are expected to discuss the substance – hexabromocycolododecane, or HBCD.

Animal test data show the substance that is used in building materials and textile products and is widely distributed in Asia, Europe and North America, adversely affects biological reproduction, behavior and immune systems.

Maker of children’s nap mats agrees to remove flame retardant chemicals

The chemical commonly known as “TDCPP” or “Tris” [Tris(1,2-dichloro-2-proply) phosphate)] is commonly used as a flame retardant in home furnishings (couches, chairs, pillows, and ottomans) as well as automotive products (seat padding, overhead liners, foams, and infant car seats). In October 2011, California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) listed TDCPP as a chemical on Proposition 65 list of chemicals.Fire Retardant

At that time both Retailers and manufacturers were having to balance the competing requirements of Proposition 65 and California’s Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation, which requires furniture and children’s products to withstand igniting when exposed to an open flame for up to twelve seconds.

However, on April 15, 2013, the Center for Environmental Health reported reaching an agreement with Peerless Plastics, a company that makes children’s nap mats, requiring it to remove the flame retardant chemicals in its products by August 1, 2013.

The agreement was reached under California’s Proposition 65 (Prop. 65), which lists chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or reproductive harm and requires companies to warn consumers if their products contain such chemicals.

The center apparently initiated legal action against Peerless and more than 50 other companies earlier this year under Prop. 65 after finding that most of the company’s nap mats tested contained flame retardants. According to the center and other advocacy organizations, children are exposed to these chemicals when they leach into the air and settle in dust that children touch and ingest. See Center for Environmental Health Press Release, April 15, 2013.

CPSC Approves New Lead Testing Method in Substrates of Children’s Products

Feb 25, 2013

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has approved High-Definition X-Ray Fluorescence (HDXRF) technology for the substrate testing of lead in children’s products using the test method ASTM F2853-10. HDXRF technology, used to detect regulated elements, had previously been approved by the CPSC for testing of lead in paint and other surface coatings of children’s products.

This new action by the CPSC expands the use of HDXRF for third-party testing to support product certification and clears the way for its use in “production testing” under the new CPSC Testing and Certification Rule, which became effective February 8, 2013. HDXRF offers the additional benefits of taking coating and substrate measurements simultaneously and non-destructively, reducing testing time and cost.

“The CSPC’s approval of HDXRF for lead in substrate testing means that manufacturers, importers, retailers and laboratories now have a complete, precise, and reliable alternative to traditional wet chemistry,” said Satbir Nayar, director of sales and marketing for consumer products of XOS, a developer of the HDXRF technique.

The detailed new CPSC regulation, called the 1112 Rule, approving HDXRF for lead in substrate testing and restating the agency’s April 2011 approval of HDXRF for lead in paint testing, can be accessed