24. March 2023

eco-INSTITUT has revised and updated the test criteria for the eco-INSTITUT-Label. The criteria are valid with immediate effect.

Since the last revision, some new substance classifications and requirement values have been published, making these adjustments necessary. In addition, concretisations have been made in some places. This allows us to continue to meet the ever-increasing demands placed on healthy living, low-emission and low-pollutant products for interiors and as well as guarantee the high quality of the eco-INSTITUT-Label in the future.

Overview of the changes:

  • Since the emission requirements of the eco-INSTITUT-Label take into account the respective valid indoor guideline values of the Federal Environment Agency, acetophenone was included with a limit value of 66 µg/m³ and the sum of naphthalene and naphthalene-like compounds was added with a requirement value of 10 µg/m³.
  • The requirement for plasticisers has been extended to include the plasticiser DIHxP (diisohexyl phthalate), which is now listed as a substance of very high concern under REACH, in all directives.
  • The scope of the timber materials & building boards guideline has been concretised. On the one hand, it was formally extended to include insulating materials, and on the other hand, it is now defined that only products whose share of renewable raw materials is at least 75 % are certified in this context. For products made of animal fibres, requirement values for alkylphenol ethoxylates and pyrethroids were added. For surface coatings, the requirement value for organotin compounds was added. Plasticisers and substitute plasticisers are now also considered in this directive. Products with the same scope of application that are made of mineral raw materials continue to be regulated by the directive “mineral building products”.

  • Mattresses: A separate guideline, which only concerns mattress foams or fillers, has been moved to “Natural latex and latexed fibres”. Generally, a requirement value of ammonia for mattresses/foams with latex of: 200 µg/m³ after 7 days now applies. Studies show that this value drops to 100 µg/m³ after 28 days at the latest (cf. guideline for smoked wood flooring). The product designation “100 % natural latex” is now explicitly not permitted on the certificate. Instead, we recommend the designation “Latex – made from 100 % natural latex”. For the background, please read our latest blog post.
  • The two guidelines on furniture were combined into one guideline. This now specifies that for panel-shaped components (e.g. kitchen worktops) the proportion of renewable and mineral raw materials must be at least 75 m%. Products with components made of leather are subject to additional requirements and are currently not certified. The requirement for ammonia (for smoked products and products with latex components) and nitrosamines (for products with latex components) was added.
  • The following classifications were updated in our database due to reclassifications in the corresponding lists in February 2023:
    • Benzophenone: reclassified as Carc. 1B (IFA list; as KMR1 it is now downgraded from 1 µg/m³)
    • Cumene: reclassified as Carc. 1B (IFA list; as KMR1 it is now downgraded from 1 µg/m³)
    • Diethylene glycol monomethyl ether (DEGME): reclassified from Repr. 2 to Repr. 1B (IFA list; as KMR1 it is now downgraded from 1 µg/m³)
    • 1,1,1-trichloroethene: reclassified from Group 3 to Group 2A (IARC list; as KMR1 it is now downgraded from 1 µg/m³)
    • Isophorone: reclassified to Group 2B (IARC; no change in assessment)
  • Formal changes

A transitional period for all changes will be granted until March 2026.

The criteria are valid immediately. If a test for the eco-INSTITUT Label was commissioned before the new criteria were published, the criteria valid before the change can still be used for the assessment.

You can find the new criteria for download at https://www.eco-institut-label.de/en/downloads/.

If you have further questions or need more infos on the update of eco-INSTITUT-Label criteria you may contact M.Sc. Environmental Science Vanessa Laumann at Vanessa.Laumann@eco-institut.de.


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