Health Advocates Pleased with Steps to Avoid Chemicals Found in Reprocessed Plastic

Today, flooring retailer Lumber Liquidators became the first major retailer to commit to selling vinyl flooring made without reprocessed plastic.

The Mind the Store Campaign, a project of Safer Chemicals, Health Families, announced that Lumber Liquidators has committed to adopt new standards that require the company’s suppliers of vinyl flooring to: end all use of reprocessed vinyl plastic in vinyl flooring; and limit lead in flooring to less than 100 parts per million (PPM).  As of September 1, 2015, Lumber Liquidators has also required its suppliers to eliminate the use of ortho-phthalates in all vinyl flooring purchased. Additionally, Lumber Liquidators has committed to regularly commission independent laboratory testing by Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)-certified laboratories to monitor compliance with these policies.

Lumber Liquidators worked with Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families’ Mind the Store Campaign to develop the framework for these standards, which are expected to be phased in over the next year.

“We are encouraged by Lumber Liquidators’ decision to sell vinyl flooring made without reprocessed plastic,” said Mike Schade, Mind the Store campaign director of Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families.  “This is a positive step and we hope other major flooring and home improvement retailers will join Lumber Liquidators in eliminating this unnecessary plastic.”

“Lumber Liquidators is committed to setting the highest standards for the sourcing of flooring products,” said Jill Witter, Chief Compliance and Legal Officer of Lumber Liquidators.  “We are pleased to work with Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families on this initiative, as part of our ongoing efforts to lead the industry forward with responsible sourcing practices.”

Testing by the Ecology Center (Michigan) found that the reprocessed vinyl plastic is often contaminated with lead, cadmium, brominated flame retardants, phthalates and other toxic chemicals.  In at least 69% of the floors’ inner layers tested from six major retailers, lead was present at elevated concentrations. Testing revealed lead levels as high as 10,000 ppm and cadmium at 20,000 ppm.   The contamination results from the global trade in plastic waste, which is often recovered from the wire and cables from old computers and other electronics, according to the recent Healthy Building Network report Post-Consumer Polyvinyl Chloride in Building Products.


About Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families and the Mind the Store Campaign

The Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families coalition represents more than 11 million individuals and includes parents, health professionals, advocates for people with learning and developmental disabilities, reproductive health advocates, environmentalists and businesses from across the nation.  The Mind the Store Campaign is coordinated by Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families, which is encouraging major US retailers to adopt policies to identify, restrict, and safely substitute the Hazardous 100+ chemicals in common consumer products.  For more information, please visit and

For more information, contact Tony Iallonardo at (202) 503-8581 or

About Lumber Liquidators

lumber liquidator

Photo: Dwight Burdette (Wikipedia, CC)

With more than 370 locations, Lumber Liquidators is North America’s largest specialty retailer of hardwood flooring. The Company features more than 400 top quality flooring varieties, including solid and engineered hardwood, bamboo, cork, laminate and resilient vinyl. Additionally, Lumber Liquidators provides a wide selection of flooring enhancements and accessories to complement, install and maintain your new floor. Every location is staffed with flooring experts who can provide advice and useful information about Lumber Liquidators’ low priced product, much of which is in stock and ready for delivery. For more information, please visit

For further information from Lumber Liquidators, contact John Feld – One Simple Plan at (612) 677-2248 or