Hazardous chemicals in branded luxury textile products on sale during 2013

Greenpeace has recently published a number of investigations showing that a wide range of textile products, manufactured and sold in many countries around the world, can contain residues of hazardous substances, including hormone-disrupting alkylphenols and their ethoxylates, reprotoxic phthalates, highly persistent per- and polyfluorinated chemicals, and – in some cases – azo dye precursors of carcinogenic amines. This study extends this work to include a set of 27 luxury clothing and footwear products, sold by eight major clothing brands and purchased in nine countries/regions around the world between May and June 2013. This set of products included examples reported to have been manufactured in at least seven different countries, although the countries of manufacture of five of the articles could not be determined. The range of chemical residues investigated in the current study included nonylphenol ethoxylates (in all 27 articles), carcinogenic amines released under reducing conditions (in 11 articles having dark or deeply coloured fabric), phthalates (in five articles with plastisol printed fabric), organotins (in three articles with plastisol printed fabric and four items of footwear), per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (in three items of footwear, a waterproof clothing article, and an article of swimwear), and antimony (in three products containing polyester-based fabrics). Details of the analyses carried out, and information on the various chemicals quantified in this study, are provided within this report.

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