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Today, Walmart unveiled its sustainable chemicals policy Implementation Guide. The Guide details how the company will work with suppliers to bring safer products to millions of American shoppers, as announced last September when the policy was introduced.
Walmart’s chemicals policy affects formulated consumable products – the non-food products that you can pour, squeeze, dab or otherwise apply to your body or use in and around your home or car, from health and beauty aids to baby products to pet supplies. There are three main components of the policy: transparency through expanded ingredient disclosure; advancement of safer product formulation through the reduction, restriction, and elimination of priority chemicals and use of safer substitution practices; and a plan to take Walmart private brand consumables through the U.S. EPA Design for Environment (DfE) Safer Product Labeling Program — a rigorous product certification program that reviews the safety of product ingredients. Walmart’s policy is audacious in that it attempts to evolve from the common restricted substance list (RSL) approach to one that actively promotes usage of safer chemicals. The release of the Implementation Guide makes public how this is expected to happen.