REACH is the European Community Regulation on chemicals and their safe use. It deals with the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemical substances (REACH). The law entered into force June 2007.

The aim of REACH is to improve the protection of human health and the environment through the better and earlier identification of the intrinsic properties of chemical substances. The REACH Regulation places greater responsibility on industry to manage the risks from chemicals and to provide safety information on the substances.

Manufacturers and importers are required to gather information on the properties of their chemical substances, which will allow their safe handling, and to register the information in a central database run by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) in Helsinki.

The Agency acts as the central point in the REACH system: it manages the databases necessary to operate the system, co-ordinates the in-depth evaluation of suspicious chemicals and is building up a public database in which consumers and professionals can find hazard information.

REACH provisions are being phased – in over 11 years. Companies can find explanations of REACH on the ECHA website, in particular in the guidance documents.

PFC flex circuits and REACH

According to information made available to PFC from our suppliers, all materials used by PFC in the manufacture of flexible printed circuits and rigid flex are REACH compliant. The exception would be the use of Hot Air Solder Level ed tin/lead.

PFC flex assemblies

Most of the components used in flex assembly are REACH compliant. Where components are customer-supplied, or sources are customer-specified, PFC cannot be responsible for REACH compliance of the components.

The use of lead solder in a flex assembly does violate REACH. For more information see our RoHS page.