Happy 2023 to all!

It is an honour to succeed Jan Robinson as the Chair of the Downstream Users of Chemicals Coordination group (DUCC). Jan Robinson did an excellent job as Chair, so the bar is set very high. The challenge might be significant, but I feel confident that with the support of all the highly skilled and dedicated members of DUCC, we will succeed in meeting the challenges and opportunities we are facing, as we continue to play our important role in contributing with a common voice to the successful implementation of the requirements of the REACH and CLP Regulations.

I am taking over as Chair of DUCC at a very interesting time, with an important legislative agenda ahead of us. With the implementation of the Green Deal and the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability (CSS), many pieces of legislation will be revised. DUCC members recognise the key role they have to play during this ambitious process. The key principles that DUCC conveys for a successful implementation of the CSS calls for: the use of science and risk-based approaches at the heart of any legislative decision; the capacity to enable innovation and competitiveness; the call to align with global standards such as UN GHS and the need to secure a smart transition to digitalisation of the information.

The chemical industry is a very complex chain comprising of several bits and pieces. DUCC members are formulators committed to producing effective, safe and sustainable products. They mix together substances and/or mixtures, with no chemical reaction taking place during the process to produce cosmetics, detergents, aerosols, adhesives and sealants, construction chemicals, fragrances, lubricants, crop protection. DUCC also represents chemical distributors. Compared to the raw material suppliers, most of the formulators are European SMEs.

Together with the DUCC manager and colleagues, we will ensure a regular dialogue with the European Commission and the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) to ensure that downstream users’ concerns are appropriately addressed. We are part of the solution for the Green Deal!

Our first plan for this year is to organise a workshop with different stakeholders on Assessment of Alternatives – How to substitute substances in applications. DUCC has also submitted comments to the EU Year of Skills to engage on making information on safe handling of chemicals more accessible and understandable for professional workers. We look forward to engaging with different stakeholders on the important topics that will come in the revisions of REACH and CLP.

Stronger together, we, the formulators of chemicals will resolutely support the Green Deal.

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