LIFE AskREACH - Enabling REACH consumer information rights on chemicals in articles by IT-tools

LIFE16 GIE/DE/000738

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Contact details:

Contact person: Eva Becker
Tel: 4934021033170
Fax: 4934021033170
Email: chemicals@uba.de

Project description:


REACH aims for a high level of protection of human health and the environment. It provides incentives for manufacturers, importers and downstream users of chemicals to replace substances of very high concern (SVHC) with suitable alternatives. REACH not only defines an obligation for article suppliers to communicate on SVHC in articles down the supply chain, but it also establishes a right to know for consumers. This right outlined in Article 33(2) of the REACH Regulation entitles consumers to receive information from suppliers of products on the presence of SVHC (persistent, bio-accumulative and/or toxic substances, carcinogenic, mutagenic, endocrine disrupting or respiratory sensitising) in those products within 45 days as well as information on the product’s safe use. This flow of information requires effective communication between all actors in the supply chain on SVHC in the input materials of products (REACH Article 33.1). According to ECHA’s 2016 report on the operation of REACH, there are “clear indications that information on substances in articles is not adequately communicated in the article supply chains”.


LIFE AskREACH has the overall goal of helping the implementation of the REACH directive by:

  • Raising awareness of consumers on hazard information as well as of the market actors on their duties under REACH as importers, manufacturers, downstream users, retailers;
  • Increasing incentives for manufacturers, importers and downstream users of chemicals to replace SVHC by suitable alternatives;
  • Increasing the awareness of actors at the end of the supply chain (producers and retailers, consumers) about the presence of SVHC in goods and of the right to know;
  • Making available on-the-spot information (purchase decision) to increase the market demand for SVHC free products. This is an incentive for industrial actors to identify SVHCs; and
  • Facilitating communication on SVHC between consumers and companies as well as along the supply chain.
  • Expected results:

  • A central European IT system for communication on SVHC in articles;
  • A European-wide smartphone application for consumers (nearly three million downloads) to send requests to suppliers;
  • A SVHC/article database that will be fed in by companies;
  • A REACH-related supply chain communication tool to support companies in the organisation of the supply chain; Training material for retailers on SVHC in articles;
  • Two large-scale campaigns in 13 countries (including 395 events such as info days, seminars and trainings) that will reach some 6 m recipients in three years;
  • 3 million consumer requests for information sparked by AskREACH forcing companies to provide answers (and thus reinforce their supply chain communication);
  • Enhanced SVHC communication and substitution, leading to a substantial reduction of SVHC;
  • 250 suppliers directly involved with 15 companies exercising supply chain communication; and
  • Massive support from competent authorities and REACH helpdesks from EU Member States.



Environmental issues addressed:


Industry-Production - Chemicals


environmental law‚  public health‚  environmental awareness‚  chemical industry

Target EU Legislation

  • Chemicals & Hazardous substances
  • "Regulation 1272/2008 - Classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures (amend ...

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator Umweltbundesamt
Type of organisation National authority
Description UBA is Germany’s main environmental protection agency (about 1 500 staff), ensuring a healthy environment with clean air and water, free of pollutants to the greatest extent possible. UBA gathers environmental data, detects environmental problems, assesses them and proposes solutions. UBA provides scientific assistance to the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, implements environmental law, e.g. CO2 trading, approval processes for biocides and identification of SVHC under REACH, and provides information to the public. UBA is one of the three German federal authorities responsible for the REACH implementation and in this respect deal with all issues concerning the environment. With regard to REACH Art. 33 UBA organised several workshops on communication in the supply chain, investigated and developed communication tools and runs an online-tool for REACH consumer requests (REACH portal, smartphone app for REACH).
Partners ZERO - Association for the Sustainability of the Earth System, Portugal The Danish Environmental Protection Agency, Denmark Swedish Consumers' Association / Sveriges Konsumenter, Sweden Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology, Luxembourg Bund für Umwelt und Naturschutz Deutschland e. V., Germany Arnika - Toxics and Waste Programme, Czech Republic Hochschule Darmstadt (University of applied science), Germany European Environmental Bureau, Belgium Swedish Chemicals Agency, Sweden Baltijas Vides Forums, Latvia Danish Consumer Council / Forbrugerrådet Tænk, Denmark Verein für Konsumenteninformation, Austria Zelena akcija, Croatia Fundacja Kupuj Odpowiedzialnie (Buy Responsibility Foundation), Poland National Observatory of Athens, Greece Baltic Environmental Forum Germany, Germany Ecologistas En Acción, Spain Institut National de l’Environnement Industriel et des Risques, France GLOBAL 2000 Umweltschutzorganisation, Austria


Project reference LIFE16 GIE/DE/000738
Duration 01-SEP-2017 to 31-AUG -2022
Total budget 6,996,368.00 €
EU contribution 4,195,600.00 €
Project location Sachsen-Anhalt(Deutschland)


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