Following the assessment of more than 3,400 statements, the Ministry has published a report revealing approximately 500,000 tonnes of nanomaterials to have been placed on the French market in 2012.
Of these 500,000 tonnes, 280,000 tonnes were produced in France and 220,000 tonnes were imported.
Cosmetics and personal care products represented 6.1% of reported uses, ranking in the third position of identified uses, behind the formulations (mixtures) of preparations and / or re-packaging (19.6% of all declarations), coats and paints, solvents, thinners (8.1%).
Despite difficulties in accurately identifying reported substances, the assessment includes a list of the substances for which the largest quantities (over 100 tonnes) were declared. Topping the list were: carbon black, silicon dioxide, calcium carbonate, titanium dioxide and aluminum oxide.
As far as the industry is concerned, the Union of Chemical Industries (UIC) emphasized the strong mobilization of chemical manufacturers, despite practical difficulties with the collection system, but expressed its concerns regarding “the impact of this initiative on the chemical industry in France.”
First analysis of its kind..
According to the government, the requirement - the first in Europe, aims to better understand the substances placed on the French market.
“This is the first time that all manufacturers, distributors or importers of substances in a nanoparticle size - a billionth of a meter length scale - must declare the uses and annual quantities produced, imported and distributed on French territory." the Ministry stated.
The first series of declarations, covering the year 2012, was collected via a dedicated web site. In total, more than 930 registrants have made more than 3400 declarations.
“Under Decree No. 2012-232, companies that manufacture, import, and/or distribute a "substance with nanoparticle status" in an amount of at least 100 grams per year must submit an annual report with substance identity, quantity, and use information," the document outlines.
A second report is set to be published in January 2014.