Chemicals of concern in plastic toys
Chemicals of concern in plastic materials used in children's toys around the world have been identified. This work was published in Environment International by a team around professor Peter Fantke from the Technical University of Denmark in collaboration with UN Environment.
The author team uses measured chemical concentrations as a starting point to assess the exposure and risks of children to various toy materials. They propose a ranking of various chemicals, of which some exceed the current risk threshold, while others are of less concern and yet others require further research to quantify exposure and risk. They finally back-calculate maximum Acceptable Chemical Content (ACC) for all chemicals as an indication of safe use.
The next steps to refine and operationalize this approach are to develop models for currently missing exposure pathways (such as mouthing), to develop approaches for estimating chemical weight fractions in plastic and other materials, and to extend the applied framework to other products beyond children toy materials.