At BeSafe we regularly test our products to ensure that they meet our own quality and safety standards. The BeSafe requirements are higher than the demands in the regulations. However, we have discovered that some of the labels used on our products contain too high levels of a chemical called Naphthalene.
We reached out to chemical experts to get an in-depth understanding of any potential consequences. According to independent scientific specialists in the fields of i.a. human health assessment, exposure modelling and toxicity, the chemical level found in the labels does not pose a risk to babies, toddlers or infants when exposed during normal use of the car seat. This means that even if the levels are higher than our standard, it doesn´t represent any risk of health issues for the users. But, as the chemical level in the label is not satisfactory to our standards, we have taken immediate action and changed supplier of the labels.
Information about the chemical
Naphthalene is a chemical belonging to the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH). It is an organic compound and low concentrations of naphthalene can be found almost everywhere in the environment. According to the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, there are no sound epidemiological findings of a carcinogenic effect in humans after naphthalene exposition by inhalation. Following the principle of minimization, manufacturers are advised to still reduce the amount of naphthalene in consumer products as far as technically possible.
As established by the independent experts based on their in-depth exposure modelling, human health analysis and knowledge in the field, the level of chemical finding in the label does not pose a health risk for the child in our car seats through any route of exposure. The conclusion is based on three factors; the amount of PAH found in the product, the weight of the exposed person and the accessibility of the chemical through air. The tests that are done specifically on the BeSafe products show that the level of naphthalene in the labels does not have a negative effect on the children using our products.
BeSafe iZi Go Modular X1 i-Size in Stiftung Warentest/ADAC test
This detected increased chemical level is also reflected in the test results of the ADAC/Stiftung Warentest publication in May 2021 where BeSafe iZi Go Modular X1 i-Size was included. Stiftung Warentest is a German consumer council which twice a year conducts independent child seat tests in collaboration with ADAC and other test institutes to help consumers navigate among different seats.
This consumer test consists of 3 main categories in which a car seat gets tested: Safety, comprising 50% of the total score, handling (40%) and ergonomics (10%). In the safety category, BeSafe iZi Go Modular X1 i-Size achieved the rating “Very Good” (1.3) and the best side impact score in this test, even improving the already strong performance of its predecessor BeSafe iZi Go Modular i-Size. We are pleased to see that also with a solid performance in the categories of handling and ergonomics, the baby car seat would have gotten a total rating of “Good” as well.
But the chemical test result reflects the increased amount of naphthalene found in one label, which leads to a full downgrade of the total score. The maximum naphthalene values used by Stiftung Warentest are based on the German GS mark (“Geprüfte Sicherheit”). According to the German Federal Institute of Risk Assessment, these GS maximum values are not derived from health aspects though. They are rather oriented on what is nowadays technically achievable and fulfillable.
We support Stiftung Warentest’s intention of prompting manufacturers to minimise the chemical use as much as possible with these maximum values. But we are sorry to see that this can give wrong signals to consumers who do not know that these maximum values are not derived from health aspects.
As investigated by independent chemical experts, the level of chemical finding in the BeSafe iZi Go Modular X1 i-Size does not pose a health risk for the child through any route of exposure.