CPSC Ends Third Party Testing Requirement for Unfinished Engineered Wood Products

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently issued a final rule on Friday determining that untreated and unfinished engineered wood products including (particleboard, hardwood plywood and medium-density fiberboard) do not contain lead and, therefore, are not required to have third-party testing for compliance with the lead content requirements for children’s products under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA).

The American Home Furnishings Alliance has sought relief from third-party lead content rules since they were put into place several years ago.

According to the AHFA, the trade group submitted details on the entire manufacturing process for composite wood products, emphasizing that lead was not present as an unintentional impurity, nor as a by-product of the process  absence of lead as an intentional or even unintentional element in that process.

The Commission’s Final Rule on June 22,  puts an end to lead testing requirements under the CPSIA for engineered wood products.

The June 22, action by the commission effectively ends the lead testing requirements for engineered wood products under CPSIA for particleboard, medium density fiberboard and hardwood plywood.

The same can’t be said about Section 101 of the CPSIA, which set lead limits for the substrate of any accessible part of a children’s product, as well as for the paint that coats a children’s product or household furniture. The regulation forced the furniture industry and other industries to devise other methods of testing lead testing for lead in composite woods used in the manufacture of children’s furniture.

Even though CPSC recognizes that wood does not contain lead, it did make the same determination for resins used in composite wood products.

While CPSC acknowledged in the rule that wood does not contain lead, it did not make the same determination for the resin used in composite wood products.

The controversy about composite wood products played out over a four-year period until the commissioners adopted the final rule in a unanimous 4-0 vote.


More about the AHFA: The American Home Furnishings Alliance, based in High Point, N.C., represents more than 200 leading furniture manufacturers and distributors, plus over 150 suppliers to the furniture industry worldwide. AHFA is the voice of the residential furniture industry on all regulatory and legislative issues.

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