What is PFAS?

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a large class of thousands of synthetic chemicals that are used throughout society. They contain carbon-fluorine bonds, which are one of the strongest chemical bonds in organic chemistry. This means that they resist degradation when used and also in the environment. Most PFAS are also easily transported in the environment covering long distances away from the source of their release.

In the late 1940s and 50s, many chemical companies turned their attention to refocus their businesses on developing products. Their innovations ranged from plastics, laminates, and coated papers to synthetic fabrics, cleaners, pesticides, and countless other manmade products, which were created through chemicals usage known as PFAS. At the beginning, PFAS chemicals is for fabrics, papers, cardboard, and boards stain-resistant, water-resistant, and oil-repellant production. Only decades later did we begin to realize the price we were paying for these modern conveniences.

Two of the most commonly used and highly studied PFAS are PerFluoroOctanoic Acid (PFOA) and PerFluoroOctane Sulfonate (PFOS). In recent years, these chemicals were designated as hazardous substances by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

What kinds of products may contain PFAS chemical?

Due to the global use of PFAS over many decades, it is challenging to grasp the full spectrum of potential human health and environmental impacts.

PFAS chemicals are used in foams to extinguish flammable liquid-based fires, including fire extinguishers in airports, shipyards, military bases, chemical plants, refineries, and firefighting training facilities. It is also produced at certain manufacturing plants for electronics, textiles, papers, inks, and other consumer products as below:

  • Nonstick Cookware
  • Fast-Food Packaging
  • Cleaning products
  • Cosmetic Products
  • Paints and Sealants
  • Water-resistant Fabrics
  • LCD Display
  • Wire & Cable

PFAS Testing Expert and Analyst

  • STQ (Foshan), as a professional chemical hazardous testing expert, we help you to ensure your products purchased from China match PFAS regulations of your target market.
  • The European Union (EU) has addressed PFAS by restricting PFOS, PFOA, C9 to C14 PFCAs (perfluorocarboxylic acids) their salts and related substances well as separating some PFAS as substances of very high concern (SVHC).
  • The United States (USA) has started banning certain PFAS chemicals and has established reporting obligations for manufacturers and importers from 2023.

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