Log in

Register Subscribe

California - The California based Center for Environmental Health (CEH) has found elevated BPA levels (bisphenol A) in socks, primarily made of polyester with spandex, from several brands. All size ranges are included, but the emphasis is on babies’/children’s socks.

Different blends of polyester, cotton, and spandex were tested. The concentrations found were up to 19 times over the California safe limit of the chemical, though socks predominantly made from cotton were not affected.

The presence of BPA is reason for concern, the CEH said. BPA is believed to cause developmental and reproductive harm and is linked to breast cancer, prostate cancer, metabolic disorders, diabetes and numerous other serious health concerns, especially in infants and toddlers. The route of exposure for the chemical is dermal absorption - directly through the skin - when wearing the socks, as well as ingestion via hand-to-mouth contact after touching or handling the socks.

Based on their findings and according to California Proposition 65, the CEH sent 60-day notices to 75 sock brands. According to the Prop 65 process, defendants will have 60 days to work with CEH to remedy the violations, e.g. by providing Prop 65 warning labels for the presence of BPA with their products when sold, before CEH files a complaint.

BPA can be added in the manufacturing of polyester as an intermediary step to improve the natural properties and lifespan of a fabric. In the production of polyester fabric, BPA can be used to create hygroscopic and antistatic fabric with color fastness to washing. BPA and other bisphenols may be used as dye-fixing agents for polyester and polyamide textiles. Furthermore, BPA can be used in the production of flame retardants, fungicides, antioxidants and in PVC production. And it may also be used in spandex production for antistatic properties.

Traditionally, BPA was not considered a high-risk chemical in textile fibres. The European Commission (EC) has asked the Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS) to determine whether clothing articles expose consumers to a concerned level of BPA, whether vulnerable consumers such as infants, young children or pregnant women are at higher risk and, if possible, to recommend limit values.

Back Issue Archive
Other Publications from MCL News & Media

Weekly e-news bulletin

Latest news direct to your inbox
Get in touch: +44 1977 708488

Interested in advertising?

Simply give us a call

Sales: +44 1977 708488

Or if you prefer email, click on the button below and we'll get back to you asap


Why Subscribe?

If you are a knitwear or knitted fabric manufacturer looking to source the latest knitting technology or a designer or retailer searching for inspiration in the field of knitted textiles, Knitting Trade Journal is the ideal resource for you.

Key benefits:

You will learn about:

All this from MCL News & Media – the fastest growing international textile publisher – which offers a unique insight into how today’s industry will look tomorrow.

In print, online and mobile device formats.