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Washington State’s Department of Ecology uses GPC for Children's Safe Products Reporting

In 2008, Washington State’s Legislature passed the Children's Safe Products Act. This law limits the use of lead, cadmium, five flame-retardants, and six phthalates in children's products sold in Washington State. It requires manufacturers to report if their children’s products contain any chemical on the Washington list of Chemicals of High Concern to Children.

In 2011, Washington State’s Department of Ecology adopted the Children's Safe Products Reporting Rule to define the list of chemicals manufacturers must report. It establishes what manufacturers of children's products must do to comply with the reporting requirements and clarifies the enforcement processes used if manufacturers fail to report. To enforce the requirements, they test products to ensure manufacturers follow limits on restricted-use chemicals and report accurate information about chemicals in their children's products. They also test products to make sure manufacturers comply with other laws regulating chemicals such as Bisphenol A (BPA), toxic metals in packaging, and copper in vehicle brake pads.

Manufacturers must report four pieces of information for their children's products containing one or more of the Chemicals of High Concern to Children (CHCC):

  1. Product Category: Submit one report for all products that fit into a single category
  2. Product Component: Indicate which component(s) contain a CHCC
  3. Chemical (or CHCC) Concentration: Report the highest amount of each CHCC found in a product component
  4. Chemical Function: List of chemical functions in the product component

The Department of Ecology chose GS1’s Global Product Classification (GPC) standard to implement product category reporting. GPC provides identification of products that serve a common purpose, are of a similar form and material, and share the same set of category attributes.

All CSPA reporting is processed through the Department of Ecology’s online database. Each database user begins the process by creating an account in the Secure Access Washington (SAW) system. This provides an added layer of security and allows users access to multiple online government services with the use of a single user ID and password. Users are required to select a GPC “Brick” classification for each product submitted to the database.

“We chose the GPC standard because it’s a business language familiar to manufacturers who report under CSPA. GPC saves time for manufacturers when reporting, and it’s more efficient for Ecology when verifying compliance with our consumer product laws.” says Tina Schaefer, the Compliance Lead for Children’s Safe Products Reporting at the Department of Ecology.

Contact information

Interested in learning more about this project? Contact Mike Mowad, Director, Global Product Classification, GS1 at

For more information on GPC go to

For more information on the Children's Safe Products Reporting go to:

Contact your local GS1 Member Organisation at

About GS1

GS1 is a neutral, not-for-profit, global organisation that develops and maintains the most widely used supply chain standards system in the world. GS1 standards improve the efficiency, safety, and visibility of supply chains across multiple sectors. With local Member Organisations in 112 countries, GS1 engages with communities of trading partners, industry organisations, governments, and technology providers to understand and respond to their business needs through the adoption and implementation of global standards. GS1 is driven by over a million user companies, which execute more than six billion transactions daily in 150 countries using GS1 standards. More information at