The International OEKO-TEX Association set its standard for total lead content in all four classes of product it certifies at 90 ppm, or dramatically lower than the 330 ppm limit that takes effect in April in the United States under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act.

The new limits were adopted as part of the global certification organization's annual review, which regularly updates criteria and limit values used for testing textiles for harmful substances in accordance with the OEKO-TEX Standard 100.


The list of criteria is used by apparel makers and retailers worldwide to protect against undesirable chemical substances coming into contact with the skin.  The updates also takes account the regulations on harmful substances under the European REACh legislation, including the textile-relevant SVHC substances that have been added to it in 2010 from the Candidate List.

A standard limit value of 90 ppm for total lead content has been set for all four OEKO-TEX product classes, a limit which is well below that currently required by US legislation (CPSIA, Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act) of 300 ppm or, from August 2011, 100 ppm for articles for babies and children. However, the most essential requirement of the OEKO-TEX Standard 100 will remain testing for extractable heavy metals using a controlled sweat solution, because this method of testing, by simulating the actual conditions of use, gives a more meaningful result with regard to the possible health risks from undesirable heavy metals in textile products than the total content.

The International OEKO-TEX Association also said universal on-site visits which were introduced at the start of 2010 as a component of OEKO-TEX certification will continue as planned.

Even after one year, very real benefits can be seen both for the participating early stage production companies and for retailers in terms of the desired optimisation of the certification process. It is the aim of the OEKO-TEX Association to have visited all companies holding an OEKO-TEX certificate by the end of 2013, in order to provide targeted assistance in implementing the required criteria in their quality control procedures, optimise the framework conditions for certification as far as possible and give companies practical tips on product labelling and using the OEKO-TEX label in their advertising.