HomeDanish PoliticsDenmark announces national ban on PFAS-containing clothing and footwear

Denmark announces national ban on PFAS-containing clothing and footwear

In a drastic move against environmental pollution, the government has announced a national ban on the sale and import of clothing and shoes containing PFAS substances. This step has been taken to reduce the harmful chemicals’ impact on both the environment and public health. PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are known for their negative effects on human health, including the potential to weaken the immune system and disrupt hormone balance. These substances are also suspected of increasing the risk of cancer.

Environment Minister Magnus Heunicke (S) stated in a press release from the Ministry of the Environment that the ban is a necessary measure to protect both nature and the population. “A national ban on the import and sale of clothing, shoes, and impregnating agents with PFAS is an important step towards limiting emissions and will have a real environmental impact in Denmark,” he said.

However, the ban will not apply to professional clothing and safety gear that require special safety and functionality standards. These may still contain PFAS for the time being. According to the Ministry of the Environment, there are already PFAS-free alternatives available on the market, and consumers are encouraged to choose these products in the future.

Denmark is not alone in this concern and is working with four other EU countries to introduce a similar ban at the EU level. In the meantime, the national ban will be in effect, expected to take effect on July 1, 2026, after a one-year transition period for businesses. The announcement of the ban is scheduled to be finalized on July 1, 2025, and it will not have retroactive effect on products purchased before this date.

Furthermore, the ban will not apply to recycled clothing and shoes. This initiative marks a significant effort by the government to combat environmental pollution and protect citizens’ health from dangerous chemicals.

Read the danish version here

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