The European Court of Justice has invalidated the classification of titanium dioxide as "probably carcinogenic by inhalation".
Various European chemical associations and some companies had filed a lawsuit against the EU regulation on the labeling of powdered titanium dioxide as "probably carcinogenic." On October 1, 2021, the European Chemicals Agency ECHA had published new guidelines for the labeling of the whitening agent, which is also used in numerous plastic products. Since then, titanium dioxide in powder form had to be labeled as carcinogenic by inhalation if the substance was contained in a product at a certain concentration and particle size. According to the ruling now published, the ECJ contends that the ECHA, and subsequently the EU Commission, failed to adequately evaluate an expert opinion on the carcinogenicity of titanium dioxide and therefore drew incorrect conclusions for the warning labels. The ECJ ruling is reportedly not yet legally binding. According to Euwid, the BDE Bundesverband der Deutschen Entsorgungs-, Wasser- und Kreislaufwirtschaft welcomes the ruling as a "necessary clarification." BDE President Peter Kurth said, "It is very gratifying that the judges of the ECJ have corrected a momentous misjudgment by the European Commission with their decision in the titanium dioxide case." The BDE would have also always made it clear that it did not share the Commission's view on this issue. The Commission had overshot the mark here, Kurth continued. The danger does not emanate from titanium dioxide in powder form per se, but the quantity and particle size when inhaled is decisive, he said. Kurth added: "However, protection against dust and general particle effects is the task of occupational health and safety and should also be dealt with there. That's why we hope the ruling, which is still subject to appeal, will stand."
- Kunststoff Information (Nov. 28, 2022)
- euwid-recycling.de (Nov. 30, 2022)
- Photo: Gerichtshof der Europäischen Union