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What Are REACH Compliant Connectors & Why Are They Important?

When it comes to modern standards for circular connectors, REACH compliance is highly relevant. 

First enforced in 2007, the European Union’s regulation on Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) impacts every manufacturer that sells their products in Europe. As the push toward more sustainable business practices expands, the prioritization of REACH compliant products only continues to grow.

What REACH Compliance Means

REACH compliant products ensure the safe use of chemicals throughout their lifecycle, as legally outlined by guidance from the European Union (EU). These guidelines require the registration, evaluation and authorization of chemicals while imposing restrictions on the use of certain substances deemed hazardous.

Cadmium, for instance, is a known carcinogen used in MIL-SPEC connectors. Due to its toxicity and potential adverse effects, it is classified as a substance of very high concern (SVHC). REACH places stringent limitations on cadmium use in applications, with the goal of promoting safer alternatives and sustainable practices.

REACH compliance also places restrictions on the use of other heavy metals like lead and mercury, as well as the use of certain perfluorinated chemicals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). 

Every few months, the European Chemicals Agency adds more substances to the REACH restriction list. You can find the latest updates here.

Manufacturing REACH Compliant Connectors

REACH compliant connectors are manufactured to minimize ecological and health risks associated with hazardous chemicals. To meet these standards, manufacturers have to undergo rigorous testing and documentation processes to verify their compliance.

Ensuring compliance is critical from a supply chain standpoint. If a business with a European market is found to have non-REACH compliant connectors in their product, it could result in numerous penalties (more on this below).

REACH compliance relates to all connector materials, which can often include chemical substances subject to restrictions under REACH. Connector manufacturers must carefully select materials that don’t contain restricted substances above certain thresholds so they can continue to support their customers’ needs.

Why REACH Compliant Connectors Are Critical for Businesses

We’ve already mentioned how the use of non-compliant REACH connectors in products can disrupt a business’ supply chain. These disruptions can lead to costly production delays and cause customers to lose trust in a vendor’s reliability and ethics, potentially harming a company’s brand and reputation in the sector.

But the impact of REACH regulation non-compliance can be felt in other areas, too. 

Failure to comply with REACH regulations as it relates to connectors can lead to fines, penalties and even product bans. The legal proceedings can be costly, time-intensive, damaging and jeopardize a business’ ability to operate within EU member states. 

The penalties associated with REACH non-compliance differ based on the country. In France, for instance, there is a maximum fine of €15000 and daily periodic penalty payments of €1500. In Denmark, administrative penalties include a ban of sale, withdrawal from the market and destruction of the non-compliant goods. For further insights, see this report on applicable penalties for REACH non-compliance.

Amerline Provides REACH Compliant Connectors

Today, nearly every business has some connection to the European market. And even if they haven’t reached that point, it’s important for businesses to be in a position to easily scale and tap into those markets in the future.

As a supplier of REACH compliant connectors, Amerline can help businesses mitigate the risk of non-compliance, maintain customer trust and safeguard their success. Our surface finishes are carefully selected to comply with stringent REACH regulations, as well as other industry standards like Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS)

Knowing that our connectors are manufactured responsibly and are REACH compliant  gives you peace of mind in the quality, safety and reliability of our products for yours.

Need REACH compliant connectors for your application? Request a quote.

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