As in past years, ISPA is tracking numerous bills to regulate the use of intentionally added PFAS in consumer products. Of note to the mattress industry, eight states – Colorado, New York, Illinois, Vermont, Tennessee, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire– have introduced bills in 2024, that would ban the sale of many consumer products containing intentionally added PFAS. Some bills also would ban the distribution and manufacture of such products. Most if not all of these bills could be interpreted to ban intentionally added PFAS from at least juvenile products (including juvenile mattresses) by 2025, and several would ban the use of PFAS in all mattresses by 2032. In some bills, however, certain products are exempt when their use of PFAS is deemed unavoidable.

Per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (commonly referred to as PFAS) refer to a broad class of over 4,000 individual fluorinated organic chemicals used to make fabrics stain and moisture-resistant. PFAS have been dubbed “forever chemicals” because of their long breakdown time, and research may link them to some health problems, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure and certain types of cancer.  “Intentionally added PFAS” is usually defined to mean PFAS added to a product or intentionally used during the development of a product or one of its product components to provide a specific characteristic, appearance, or quality or to perform a specific function. 

In general, none of the bills expressly includes the word “mattress” in describing the products subject to their bans. Nevertheless, their product coverage (which varies somewhat from bill to bill) can include but is not limited to such things as textile articles, upholstered furniture, fabric treatments, and juvenile products. The exact scope of these bans is often unclear because some of these terms are not defined.

Of particular relevance to the mattress industry, the term “juvenile products” is generally defined in some of these bills and in other legislation to mean a product designed for use by an infant or child less than 12 years of age, and as such would include infant and child mattresses. Some of the new bills go further and expressly exempt “adult mattresses” (defined as any mattress other than a toddler mattress, crib mattress or other sleep product for infants) from the definition of juvenile products. The effective dates for these bans range from 2025 to 2028, depending on the product category and bill.

Although these bills are similar in many respects, there are some important differences. In addition to the initial product bans, the Colorado, New York, Illinois, Vermont, and Tennessee bills would prohibit the use of intentionally added PFAS in all consumer products (which apparently would include adult mattresses) by 2032. The New Jersey bill directs its Department of Environmental Protection to recommend additional consumer products to include in its intentionally added PFAS bans, while the New Hampshire and Rhode Island bills would not expand their initial bans.

Click here for a chart that analyzes these bills in further detail. To access the member-only part of the ISPA website, please click on “member login” on the upper right-hand corner of the page to log in to your member portal access, create an account, or reset your password.

In addition to intentionally added PFAS bans in consumer products, ISPA is tracking multiple state bills to study PFAS and monitor for its presence in groundwater and drinking water. ISPA will update members on developments with these bills.

If you have questions about these bills, please email [email protected]