Waterproofing Products Tested for Dangerous Fluorochemicals

Nikwax waterproofing products contain zero levels of perfluoroctyl materials, as confirmed in a study conducted by the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation. Perfluoroctyl materials are persistent in human tissue and associated with birth defects.
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Seattle, Wash. (October 29, 2007) - The Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (SSNC) recently tested waterproofing products for waterproof clothing, looking for perfluoroctyl content. Perfluoroctyl-based fluorocarbon water repellents biodegrade over time to PFOA, which is persistent in human tissue, and has a half-life of eight years. PFOA at even very low levels has been associated with birth defects in tests with rats. All human beings now have this chemical in their blood.

Nikwax waterproofing products were the only products included in the test that were shown to contain zero levels of these chemicals.

Fluorocarbons May Be Dangerous to Unborn Children. Recent research in both the USA and Denmark has linked head dimension of newborn babies to the amount of a perfluoroctyl material, PFOA, found in their umbilical cords. In other words, even extremely low levels of PFOA may negatively affect human growth. As a result of the Swedish report, responsible Swedish Outdoor retailers have removed fluorocarbon-based waterproofing products from their shelves.

Nikwax Offers a Safer Alternative.
Nick Brown, Nikwax founder, said “we have avoided fluorochemicals in our products because we are committed to the well-being of our consumers and our employees. We do not consider a home environment to be a safe place to be handling these chemicals.”

For more information on the SSNC study, please visit: http://www.snf.se/verksamhet/konsument/hmv-impreg.htm

About the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation
The Swedish Society for Nature Conservation, SSNC, is Sweden's biggest nature conservation and environmental organization. They actively work to promote the use of safe-working practices and advise on a wide range of environmental issues.

About Nikwax
Nikwax, founded in 1978, is the global leader in environmentally safe, aftercare waterproofing solutions for extending the life and performance of technical footwear, outerwear and equipment. Nikwax is committed to environmental responsibility.

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