Between May 2022 and February 2023, laboratory technicians performed 2,374 tests on clothing purchased in different European countries. No BPA, nickel or chromium VI substances found. These substances can be carcinogenic, but they can also cause skin irritation or disrupt hormones.
The study also shows that imported clothing is not thoroughly inspected everywhere in Europe, meaning the product could end up on the European market anywhere. Moreover, the search for dangerous imported products is not intensive enough.
According to Secretary of State for Consumer Protection Alexia Bertrand (Open Vld), consumers should be aware of the problem. “From the moment you see ‘Made in China,’ you know you have to be careful,” she told VRT NWS.
The Secretary of State wants to improve controls by bringing together the sector, inspection services (Economic Inspection, Public Health FPS and Customs and Excise Administration) and government.
In addition, Bertrand wants to ensure that all European countries use the same standards. She continued: “I will also raise this matter during the Belgian presidency of the European Union from January.” “It seems important to me that all countries focus equally on inspections.”
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