Chemicals Coffee Time Monthly, April 2023
Welcome to the compilation from the April 2023 editions of Chemicals Coffee Time.
In April, we finally had confirmation that the UK-REACH registration deadlines are being extended. However, we’ve also discovered that there can be a problem with DUINs made by companies outside GB, which means that these may only apply to import by existing customers, not import by new customers.
There’s also an update on the proposed labelling changes to EU-CLP labels, and much more.
UK-REACH deadline extensions are going ahead
DEFRA writes: “We are writing to inform you that the draft statutory instrument (SI) for extending the UK REACH submission deadlines was laid before Parliament on Thursday 20th April 2023. This will extend the deadlines to October 27th 2026, 2028 and 2030 respectively.
We expect this SI to be enacted and in force by Q3 2023, following parliamentary scrutiny and approval. The draft SI can be viewed via the following link:
This puts back the deadlines for registration by 3 years for each deadline. It’s good news that this has been agreed by both the Welsh and Scottish devolved governments in good time, as the change in Scottish First Minister in late March might have distracted people from this kind of administrative approval.
There are two (theoretical) cost benefits to this: these deadlines will take the pressure off potential registrants and give them three more years to save up for data costs. At the same time, it is hoped that some EU REACH registration data will become publicly available under the “12 year rule”, reducing some data costs, although whether this works in practice remains to be seen.
The deadline extensions should particularly help GB companies who previously bought from EU suppliers and now find themselves importers with liability for UK-REACH registration. We have heard from companies in this position that they are finding it difficult to cope with the demands of REACH registration in a shorter time-frame than we had initially for complying with REACH, which was over a 12 year period from the date of publication of the regulation to the last registration deadline.
An extension to the deadlines should also help companies outside GB who wish to register via an Only Representative.
Liability for UK-REACH registrations on imported substances
We’ve recently discovered that companies in the EU who have used their UK subsidiary companies to make DUINs may be one of two types:
- they don’t import via the subsidiary
- they do import via the subsidiary
This is really important to know if you’re buying products from a GB subsidiary of a UK company.
If you are purchasing existing or new products from a company which holds DUINS for all its products, and imports via its own GB subsidiary, which means the transaction is between you and the GB subsidiary, the DUINs will cover you, and also any new products you (or a new customer) wishes to purchase direct from the subsidiary.
However, if the subsidiary company doesn’t physically import goods, and instead you purchase direct from their EU factory, their DUINs will only be valid for the products and customers they were serving on Exit Day.
So if you are a new customer of theirs, or an existing customer who wishes to buy products you didn’t buy before Exit Day, you become the Importer for REACH purposes.
As you might imagine, this distinction has caused some confusion between GB and EU companies. We have a flowchart explaining the fine details for companies who may be affected by this, please email or DM me if you’d like a copy.
Update on EU labelling proposals
In last month’s edition of Chemicals Coffee Time Monthly, I explained how the EU had just amended CLP under a delegate Act to bring in the new hazard classes, which you can see in our infographics here: https://www.ghsclassificationcourses.com/proposed-new-clp-hazard-classes-from-the-eu-september-2022-published-march-2023/ (open access).
They were also due to bring in a Legislative Act to amend the Articles of CLP to include the new hazard classes. However, this Act also includes some proposals to increase the font size and line spacing on labels which would effectively push many industrial chemicals to use fold out or “booklet” labels.
The good news is that the Legislative Act was put to the EU Parliament by the EC very quickly on the 4th of April, which was only 2 working days after the consultation had closed.
The bad news is that they did not take into account any industry feedback about how unworkable these proposals are, and simply passed through the Act without any amendments!
To make matters worse, they have also notified the WTO of the unamended Legislative Act, see https://docs.wto.org/dol2fe/Pages/SS/directdoc.aspx?filename=q:/G/TBTN23/EU966.pdf&Open=True . This looks like either they are presuming that there will be no changes in the European Parliament; or that they are trying to force these changes through, regardless of what industry thinks.
The good news is that there was an equally prompt response on the 5th of April. Many thanks to Michelle Clements of Christeyns, who spotted that this from the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety committee see https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/ENVI-PR-745493_EN.pdf.
My colleague Alison Potts writes – the European parliament assigned it to the responsible committee (Environment, Public Health and Food Safety), and 2 committees for opinions (Internal Market and Consumer Protection, & Industry, Research and Energy).
What you are looking at is the response of the Responsible Committee to the EU Council with proposed amendments. The Committee (parliament) won’t pass the legislative act without the amendments. The two opinion committees have waived their opinions.
The good news is that the minimum font sizes have been halved.
The committee has reps from CEFIC, BASF, L’Oreal etc… We made enough fuss that our feelings were known
The next step is for the EU to redraft with the amendments and reissue for the parliamentary (Committee) vote. If they make the requested amendments it will pass.
So we need to wait and see if the proposed font sizes are accepted, or the EC try a bit of horse-trading. It looks like digital labelling is definitely going to be allowed, though, which I think is a retrograde step.
You can follow the work of the EU’s ENVI committee via this website: https://www.europarl.europa.eu/committees/en/envi/home/highlights, there is even the option to watch their meetings live.
Many thanks to Aaron Mcloughlin of FleishmanHillard who picked up this video on the CLP proposals on the 4th of May: https://www.linkedin.com/posts/aaron-mcloughlin-1a86281_exchange-of-views-on-clp-envi-4-may-2023-activity-7059875375031427072-A8Ra . (I must confess that I found it such heavy going that I haven’t watched it all the way through yet!).
Guidance on new EU hazard classes issued
ECHA have also moved promptly, this time in issuing guidance on the new hazard classes (even though they’re only part-way brought into law, and won’t be fully legal until the Legislative Act is passed), see https://echa.europa.eu/new-hazard-classes-2023 .
Reminder – when EU regulation amendments come into effect
While we’re on the topic of EU regulations, a colleague has been wrestling with an EU supplier who has a product which will be classified more severely under the 18th ATP to CLP than at present. As the product is sold back into the EU in a mixture, it’s essential our colleague uses the 18th ATP classification as soon as it becomes mandatory, yet the supplier has apparently been advised by their lawyers that there is an 18 month phase in period which starts on 1st December 2023, the date the regulations apply.
This is a complete misreading of the situation. There is a phase-in period for the 18th ATP to CLP, but it started on 23rd May 2022, the date the 18th ATP entered into force (20 days after the date of publication), and which ends on 1st December 2023, the date on which the regulations apply, that is the date by which everybody must comply. (To make things trickier, the 18th ATP originally applied from 23rd November 2023, but this was amended to 1st December 2023 in a corrigendum. The consolidated version of the 18th ATP is available here: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:02022R0692-20220503 ).
We are unsure whether the supplier, or their lawyer is deliberately misinterpreting the law to buy themselves more time, or whether their legal team have misunderstood how EU law works (the company concerned are USA lawyers with an EU office).
If you are faced with a situation like this, your options include:
- explaining how the regulations work to the supplier, perhaps involving a third party consultant if they don’t believe you
- advising the supplier to ask their local Competent Authority what they should do
- or, better still, asking the supplier’s local Competent Authority to confirm what should happen in writing, and taking that to the supplier
This type of misinterpretation of when EU regulations apply is not new. We came across a similar situation during the CHIP phase-out period when there was some confusion between whether CLP labels and CLP-only SDSs had to be provided for new products from 31st May 2015 or 31st May 2017 (the end of the phase out period).
To help our readers with understanding the various dates around CLP ATPs, we produced an infographic which email newsletter subscribers can download from here: https://www.ghsclassificationcourses.com/subscribers-only-infographic-on-when-eu-regulations-apply/ (you need to be logged into the website to access this).
If you’re not already a subscriber to our weekly email edition of Chemicals Coffee Time, you can sign up here: https://www.ghsclassificationcourses.com/home/newsletter-sign-up/
Training in chemical engineering for non-engineers
You may have seen that the IChemE have been advertising chemical engineering training for scientists and other engineers, run by an academic.
If you have chemists or other engineering colleagues who would benefit from understanding what chemical engineering is about in the real world, I can strongly recommend Sean Moran’s training, which is either a 1 day or 3 day course delivered on your site by someone who has (a) practiced chemical engineering in the real world and (b) written the book on Process Plant Layout.
Details of the 3 day course are here: Chemical Engineering for non-engineers 3 day course, Expertise Ltd.pdf
Sean’s contact details are:
- Dr Sean Moran
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Tel: +44 (0) 7538755797 (Mobile)
- Website expertise-limited.co.uk
- LinkedIn linkedin.com/in/sean-moran-chemical-engineer
Sean’s book on Process Plant Layout (2nd edition) is summarised here: https://www.sciencedirect.com/book/9780128033555/process-plant-layout .
I’m really looking forward to spending both the 10th and 11th May at this event, including presenting on Day 2, at 10:40 am, Stage 4 on “Brexit: Ongoing impacts on the label and SDS”.
You can still sign up to attend this free event here: https://www.chemicalukexpo.com/ .
Infographic of the month
A very detailed infographic on “Drinking water quality around the world” https://files.qssupplies.co.uk/world-drinking-water/01_Worrying_Waters_Data_Vis_Quality.png
The Weekend Recipe
During April we’ve been highlighting recipes relevant to the Coronation, so today I have two “cheats” versions for the busy person:
Last minute coronation chicken for the busy person (gluten free and lactose free):
- A whole roasted chicken, or cooked chicken pieces e.g. from your supermarket
- Hellmans full-fat mayonnaise (light Hellmans isn’t lactose free)
- Mango chutney, the best option for this dish is Geeta’s premium mango chutney (medium), second best is Patak’s. Sharwood’s mango chutney is quite sweet and will need more vinegar or lemon juice.
- red wine vinegar (or white wine vinegar, or even lemon juice if you haven’t got any wine vinegar – don’t use any other type of vinegar though!)
Method: in a decorative shallow dish or bowl, make the Coronation sauce in the following proportions:
- one heaped tablespoon of mayonnaise (a proper tablespoon, not a measure – pack on as much as you can get)
- one rounded teaspoon of mango chutney
- one half-teaspoon of red wine vinegar or alternative liquid
Mix together – I used 4 heaped tablespoons of mayo, 4 rounded teaspoon of mango chutney and two teaspoons of red wine vinegar for a 900g cooked chicken. You may need more for a larger bird. The sauce should be sweet and slightly tangy, with a mild curry flavour – as long as it tastes good and balanced, that’s the main thing. Tear or cut the cooked chicken into pieces, and coat with the sauce.
This is quite a different flavour to the turmeric-yellow sultana-containing version served up in sandwiches at petrol stations, it really is worth a try. (If it’s not spicy enough for your tastes, you can always add a touch of tabasco).
To make the cheat’s Coronation salad, heat up a couple of Uncle Ben’s microwave basmati or white rice (other brands are available) and place in a decorative bowl. Cook some frozen peas in the microwave with a little water according to the packet instructions, and stir into the warm rice. Peel and chop half a cucumber and add to the dish, then stir in a a small bottle of bought French dressing (check it’s gluten free if that affects you). Fresh herbs optional, eg parsley, chives.
Reasons to be Cheerful
Some of our April Reasons to be Cheerful have involved Coronations:
- 6th April (as the 7th April was Good Friday, a UK Bank Holiday): Imaginary Friends workshop
- 14th April, Plaza General info line:
- 21st April, King George V’s coronation procession (the service wasn’t filmed):
- 28th April, King George VI’s coronation on 12 May 1937, which was filmed for the first time:
And, as someone who was formerly owned by a cat, I couldn’t resist these cat lap settings, many thanks to Elsewine Rietveld for sharing this – https://www.linkedin.com/posts/elsewine_just-seen-on-insta-and-its-so-accurate-activity-7045026820500447232-AIYB
Many thanks for reading this LinkedIn newsletter, and many thanks to everyone who has contributed. If you have anything you’d like to share, please email me or send a DM, and I’ll do my best to include it in the next newsletter.
It would be great if you’d like to subscribe to this newsletter, or even our weekly email one https://www.ghsclassificationcourses.com/home/news… (which includes access to the email archive).
Look forward to chatting to you in late May or early June.
Janet Greenwood, TT Environmental Ltd