Click to Download


Media Contact:
Nathaniel Sponsler
Director of the AFIRM Group


The AFIRM Group Releases updated 2017 Restricted Substances List (RSL)

Leading brands in the apparel and footwear industry release updated version of a harmonized list for brands, retailers and suppliers

Los Angeles, Calif., USA (13 February 2017): Leading brands in the apparel and footwear industry participating in the Apparel & Footwear International RSL Management Group (AFIRM) are pleased to announce publication of the updated 2017 AFIRM Restricted Substance List (RSL) for brands, retailers and suppliers.

The AFIRM Group was established in 2004 with the mission “to reduce the use and impact of harmful substances in the apparel and footwear supply chain.” AFIRM developed RSL Guidance in 2011 at the request of suppliers that could be widely used within the supply chain. In December 2015, AFIRM published the first version of the AFIRM RSL, which provides up-to-date limits based on newest regulations and other agreements; corresponding test methods; and potential uses of the chemicals in an easy-to-read format. This first update to the AFIRM RSL now includes a change log as well as a risk matrix listing out materials in which restricted substances are likely to be found.

The AFIRM RSL is a tool for suppliers to establish chemical management knowledge and processes, build base compliance with AFIRM member chemical restrictions, and provide a common base for analytical testing. However, AFIRM member brands determine and communicate to their vendors their testing requirements and acceptance of test reports.

AFIRM continues to be a recognized global center of excellence, providing resources to enable continuous advancement of chemical management best practices. The Group’s programs are based on transparency, science, and collaboration with relevant industries and experts to build safer and more sustainable chemistry within the apparel and footwear supply chains. In addition, each AFIRM company has developed its own guidelines for managing chemicals in textile supply chains, and some continue to provide training to their own suppliers.

Current members of the AFIRM Group include: adidas, ASICS, Bestseller, C&A, Carhartt, Esprit, Gap Inc., Gymboree, H&M, Hugo Boss, J. Crew, Lacoste, Levi Strauss & Co., lululemon, New Balance, NIKE Inc., Pentland, PUMA, PVH, s.Oliver, Under Armour, and the VF Corporation.

The 2017 AFIRM RSL is available to download at the AFIRM website: Suppliers at all levels of the apparel and footwear supply chain are encouraged to use the AFIRM RSL as a reference for limits and testing methods of restricted substances possibly found in apparel and footwear raw materials and production processes. The AFIRM Group intends to update the RSL annually to ensure that it meets legal requirements and also goes further to advance the industry. The leading brands that created this list expect other brands across the industry to adopt the AFIRM RSL over time, which will significantly reduce confusion in the supply chain. AFIRM has also published a supplier “RSL Implementation Toolkit” for suppliers which includes further helpful information on chemicals and their proper management.


For specific information on substances restricted by individual AFIRM companies, limits and test methods, please go to the brand’s website: