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ZDHC releases MRSL Conformance Guidance

June 2, 2017

The ZDHC Programme, today releases the MRSL Conformance Guidance, a manual for the entire industry that provides indicators of a product’s

ZDHC releases MRSL Conformance Guidance to help the industry to meet ZDHC MRSL requirements


ZDHC MRSL Conformance Guidance

The ZDHC Foundation, the leading global textile, leather and footwear collaboration of 23 brands, and more than 40 value chain partners, today releases the ZDHC MRSL Conformance Guidance. This manual for industry establishes an indication system that assesses the conformance of chemical formulations, used in production, with the ZDHC Manufacturing Restricted Substances List (ZDHC MRSL).

The ZDHC MRSL is a list of chemical substances banned from intentional use in facilities that process textile materials, synthetic leather, leather, and trim parts in textiles and footwear. By using chemical formulations that conform to ZDHC’s MRSL suppliers can assure themselves, and their customers that banned chemical substances are not intentionally used during the production.

Conformance with the ZDHC MRSL is an important part of a holistic chemicals management approach that will help to drive sustainable chemistry and the reduction of hazardous chemical discharge into the environment. The ZDHC MRSL Conformance Guidance is intended for use by chemical suppliers, brands, material suppliers, product finishers, and certification bodies.

The ZDHC MRSL Conformance Guidance provides chemical suppliers with an indication system to assess the extent to which a chemical formulation conforms to, or meets, the requirements of the ZDHC MRSL. ZDHC’s intent is to leverage third-party certification systems to create an indication of conformance.  An integral part of the indication system takes the form of certificates from ZDHC accepted third-parties or acceptable analytical test results. It also describes the criteria that certification bodies must meet in order to be accepted by ZDHC as an indicator of MRSL conformance.

“The release of the MRSL Conformance Guidance is an important next step to deliver our Roadmap to Zero Programme” said ZDHC Executive Director Frank Michel.

“This manual supports chemical suppliers, brands, manufacturers, certification bodies and other intermediaries by finding and/or creating ZDHC MRSL conformant chemical formulations.”

Figure 1. MRSL Levels of Conformance

ZDHC MRSL conformance levels range from 0 to 3 as seen in Figure 1.  These levels provide a  buyer of chemical products a level of confidence that indicating how any given chemical product conforms to the ZDHC MRSL. The higher the conformance level, the more extensive and thorough the review of the chemical formulation and its producer.  

The Conformance Guidance forms the backbone of the ZDHC Gateway - Chemical Module which is the place where chemical suppliers can register their company and formulations and display the conformance levels of their products in accordance with the indication system established by the guidance. Manufacturers and brands can use the Chemical Module to find ZDHC MRSL conformant safer alternatives.

Certification bodies who are interested in becoming ZDHC accepted certifiers can review the requirements set out in the Conformance Guidance for having their certification process accepted by ZDHC as part of the indication system for ZDHC MRSL conformance.

Download the online version of the ZDHC MRSL Conformance Guidance here.

Download the FAQs here.