H&M has extended its support to International Chemical Secretariat to end the use of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the clothing and textile supply chain.
The government-funded Swedish organisation, which also goes by ChemSec, is asking policymakers to regulate PFAS efficiently without swapping one PFAS chemical for another unregulated “cousin.” ChemSec also wants a formal recognition that PFAS pose a health and environmental problem and for the chemical industry to invest in the development of safer alternatives to PFAS for an array of products. Most of all, ChemSec would like a “serious commitment” by brands to phase out PFAS from consumer products.
The biggest problem with PFAS, is they are “perfectly legal to use” with very few exceptions, which means brands that wish to stop their use have very limited ways of communicating this in their supply chains. While “business as usual is not an option,” she said, without legal restrictions, suppliers will continue to use these “very effective chemicals” in manufacturing.