Costco Launches Program To Screen Products For Troublesome Chemicals

Image courtesy of Michelle Reitman

The products dotting Costco shelves could soon be changing if manufacturers don’t ditch certain ingredients, as the warehouse store steps up its scrutiny of chemicals in products. 

Costco recently announced a screening program to test a wide range of products for chemicals that pose a regulatory and social concern.

While the company didn’t specify which chemicals it was testing for, Costco notes that it has been updating its Costco Restricted Chemical List to keep up with global regulatory changes and challenges for chemical restrictions in consumer products.

Under the Costco Smart Screening Program, the company say it is working with “major third-party laboratories” to scrutinize products.

The warehouse store says that products from children and adult apparel, bedding, home goods, furniture, personal care products, cleaning products, and other items will be physically tested against a list of over 300 chemicals of concern.

If chemicals of concern are found in the products, the Smart Screening Program will provide a list of replacement chemicals that manufacturers can use.

“We continue to work with the chemical and consumer product industries to increase our understanding in this area and to find more environmentally friendly alternatives for chemicals and practices of concern,” the company said on its website.

Costco is just the latest major retailer to take a closer look at the chemicals used in the products it sells.

Back in January, Target unveiled new guidelines for manufacturers that will require them to remove certain chemicals from products and list all ingredients on products over the next five years.

In July 2016, Walmart began encouraging suppliers to remove eight controversial chemicals from items.

The affected chemicals were mostly found in beauty and personal-care products, and Walmart now brags that it has eliminated 95% of the total of these substances by weight used in various products sold at Walmart.

[via Bloomberg]