Phthalates banned by EU legislation in concentrations higher than 0.1% were found in almost one-third of the articles from the Serbian market that were tested (10 out of 36 products). These alarming findings were revealed as part of a joint project focusing on the regulation of phthalates in Serbia. The project was carried out by a Serbian non-governmental organization, ALHem, and the Czech NGO Arnika.
Phthalates, mostly used as plastic softeners despite their toxic effects on human health, have been found in various plastic products such as school bag, girls’ bag, raincoat, children’s slippers, a PVC ladies’ makeup/toilet bag, a PVC fabric tarpaulin, imitation leather, PVC wallpaper, and car mats. These products were bought in well-known shops and were mostly produced in the EU and by domestic producers with registered trademarks. In some of the products, the concentrations of phthalates were up to 18% of the total product weight.
“It is alarming that phthalates are found in products used mostly by children and young people. In addition, the four phthalates that were analysed were detected in raw materials such as PVC fabric and PVC imitation leather, and here, the exposure for consumers could be significant,” explains Valentina Mart, the main author of the report from ALHem – Alternative for Safer Chemicals.
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