HONG KONG -- SGS has announced that it has become the first third-party certifier (TPC) to be accredited by the Hong Kong Accreditation Service (HKAS). This an award secures its long-term capability for the testing and certification of composite wood products for the U.S. market.

The Hong Kong Accreditation Service is an Accreditation Body recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to provide services under the Formaldehyde Emission Standards for Composite Wood Products Rule.

Achieving additional TPC accreditation requirements secures SGS’s position in the certification of composite wood products for the U.S. market beyond March 22, 2019 and further positions SGS as a global leader in certifying these products and related services.

In the United States, formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products are governed by the Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products Act, which is administered by the EPA.

Signed into law in July 2010, this legislation was and became the amendment and Title VI of the ‘Toxic Substances Control Act’ (TSCA). It contains requirements for composite wood panel manufacturers, fabricators of finished goods, and importers, distributors and retailers of composite wood panels and finished goods.

Amended by the EPA, the Final Rule includes provisions for formaldehyde emission standards in hardwood plywood composite core or veneer core, particleboard, medium-density fiberboard , thin-MDFs, laminated products within the meaning of HWPW, third party certification programs for panel manufacturers, incentives for products manufactured using ultra-low emitting formaldehyde resins and no added-formaldehyde-based resins, product labeling, record keeping, import certification, ABs, TPCs, and other requirements for composite wood products.

The act recognizes CARB-TPCs through reciprocity with the CARB program. According to the act, composite wood products certified by CARB-approved TPCs (that are also recognized by the EPA) are considered certified until March 22, 2019, a transitional period for CARB-approved TPCs to certify composite wood products under TSCA Title VI without an accreditation issued by an EPA TSCA Title VI AB. After March 22, 2019, CARB-TPCs must be fully accredited to remain recognized as an EPA TSCA Title VI TPC to continue certifying composite wood products as TSCA Title VI compliant.

Each finished good, box or bundle containing finished goods are to be labeled in the form of a stamp, tag or sticker. Finished goods, including component parts that are sold separately to end users, are exempt from labeling requirements if the surface area of the largest face of these composite wood products is not more than 144 square inches.

The information on the label must include: Name of fabricator or substitute with downstream fabricator, importer, distributor or retailer; Date the finished goods were manufactured (month/year); and Statement that the goods are TSCA Title VI compliant. See http://www.sgs.com/hardlines.

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