Vol. 1041 | 01 Oct 2018

On September 29, 2018, California Governor Brown signed bill AB-2998, which prohibits the sale of new juvenile products, mattresses and upholstered furniture that contains specified flame retardants.

Effective January 1, 2020, the Act prohibits sale, offer for sale and distribution in the State of California of new juvenile products, mattresses and upholstered furniture that contains ‘covered flame retardants’ above 0.1% (1000 ppm). The prohibition does not apply to:

  • Electronic components of juvenile products, mattresses, reupholstered furniture, upholstered furniture, or any associated casing for those electronic components.
  • Thread or fiber when used for stitching mattress components together.
  • Components of adult mattresses other than foam. As used in this paragraph, “adult mattresses” means mattresses other than toddler mattresses, crib mattresses and other infant sleep products.

This Act requires the Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings, and Thermal Insulation (BEARHFTI) to select samples from the regulated products and provide to the Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) for testing of flame retardants for determining compliance with the act.

In addition, the act also requires the International Sleep Products Association (ISPA) to conduct a survey of mattress producers, including those that are registered with the BEARHFTI as of January 1, 2019, and submit a survey report to the BEARHFTI on or before January 31, 2020. ISPA is also required to submit new survey of mattress producers every 3 years thereafter. BEARHFTI will publish this report on their website. The survey report should include following information:

  1. A list of the fibers or any other materials used in each component used for meeting flammability standards other than chemicals identified under paragraph (2). The specific brand name or producer of the fire barrier need not be identified.
  2. The identity of any covered flame-retardant chemical contained in each mattress component in an amount over 1000 parts per million, including, but not limited to, the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) number, if available.
  3. The method for incorporating the chemical in each mattress component used for meeting flammability standards, such as additive, reactive, or other method.
  4. The percentage of new mattress units in the United States that use the mattress component for meeting flammability standards.
  5. The types of mattresses that the mattress component is used with, such as innerspring, polyurethane foam, memory foam, gel foam, latex foam, fiber, air bladders, or the combination of those materials.

Following are the flame retardants prohibited by this Act:

  • A halogenated, organophosphorus, organonitrogen, or nanoscale flame retardant.
  • A flame-retardant chemical defined as a “designated chemical” in Section 105440 of the California Health and Safety Code.
  • A chemical listed on the Washington State Department of Ecology’s list of Chemicals of High Concern to Children in Section 173-334-130 of Title 173 of the Washington Administrative Code as of January 1, 2019, and identified as a flame retardant or as a synergist to flame retardants in the rationale for inclusion in the list.


“Juvenile product” means a product subject to this chapter and designed for residential use by infants and children under 12 years of age, including, but not limited to, a bassinet, booster seat, changing pad, floor playmat, highchair, highchair pad, infant bouncer, infant carrier, infant seat, infant swing, infant walker, nursing pad, nursing pillow, playpen side pad, playard, portable hook-on chair, stroller, and children’s nap mat.

“Mattress” means a ticking filled with a resilient material used alone or in combination with other products intended or promoted for sleeping upon.

  1. This definition includes, but is not limited to, adult mattresses, youth mattresses, crib mattresses including portable crib mattresses, bunk bed mattresses, futons, water beds and air mattresses which contain upholstery material between the ticking and the mattress core, and any detachable mattresses used in any item of upholstered furniture such as convertible sofa bed mattresses, corner group mattresses, day bed mattresses, roll-a-way bed mattresses, high risers, and trundle bed mattresses.
  2. This definition excludes sleeping bags, pillows, mattress foundations, liquid and gaseous filled tickings such as water beds and air mattresses which do not contain upholstery material between the ticking and the mattress core, upholstered furniture which does not contain a detachable mattress such as chaise lounges, drop-arm love seats, press-back lounges, push-back sofas, sleep lounges, sofa beds (including jackknife sofa beds), sofa lounges (including glide-outs), studio couches and studio divans (including twin studio divans and studio beds), and juvenile product pads such as car bed pads, carriage pads, basket pads, infant carrier and lounge pads, dressing table pads, stroller pads, crib bumpers, and playpen pads.

"Upholstered furniture" means any furniture, including children's furniture, movable or stationary, which is made or sold with cushions or pillows, loose or attached, or is itself stuffed or filled in whole or in part with any material, is or can be stuffed or filled in whole or in part with any substance or material, hidden or concealed by fabric or any other covering, including cushions or pillows belonging to or forming a part thereof, together with the structural units, the filling material and its container and its covering which can be used as a support for the body of a human being, or his or her limbs and feet when sitting or resting in an upright or reclining position. This does not include furniture used exclusively for the purpose of physical fitness and exercise.

AB-2998 can be reviewed at: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB2998

For questions, please contact Dr. Pratik Ichhaporia (pratik.ichhaporia@intertek.com, +1-847-212-8273) or Laxmi Ravikumar (laxmi.ravikumar@intertek.com, +1-630-209-9265).


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