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Avoid ‘Azo Dyes’ - Online Store Owners Warns of the Carcinogenic Dangers


QUEENSLAND, Australia July 2014 – In the last few months over 200 000 items have been recalled from Jeans West, Cotton On and Rivers Australia, after traces of azo dyes were discovered in clothing and linen, according to reports from The Herald Sun. Described by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) as a “large class of very effective synthetic dyes”, azo dyes are traditionally used to colour food, cosmetics, carpets, clothes, leather and textiles.
However new evidence has revealed that the dye can also contain – or break down to form – aromatic amines, a class of chemical the World Health Organisation (WHO) has described as having “known or suspected human carcinogens (a substance capable of causing cancer)”. *

According to the article, not all azo dyes are hazardous although many have been identified to create risks after prolonged direct contact. However the report claims that “Europe has banned such imports and the US has restrictions in place, prompting fears Australia could become a dumping ground for clothing soaked in these potentially hazardous dyes.” **

The Australian Health Department’s National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme wants to ban azo dyes from being sold and has recommended the ACCC restrict imports of hazardous dyed clothing and textiles. The ACCC recently tested 199 items in mainstream stores and found dye-affected clothing and linen, however no laws or rules have been changed to restrict their import, and according to an ACCC spokesman, washing did not necessarily reduce the concentration of hazardous chemicals.

Australian homewares online store owners Nicki Richards and Alex Wickings, urge Australians to avoid buying products that contain azo dyes even while there are no laws in place to protect consumer health and safety. “Keep your family safe by asking if products contain azo dyes or check the register for recalled products. The health and safety of consumers is extremely important. The ACCC generally do a great job in regulating and protecting consumers in Australia given our current regulations, but I believe our product safety regulations are well and truly behind other countries, particularly those in Europe which have had rigorous legislation regulating the use of harmful chemicals since the mid-1990s,” says Nicki, co-owner of beachy homewares online store Beach Abode Living.

“Beach Abode Living’s Australian homewares products are proudly azo dye free. We continually engage independent inspection agencies to inspect and test our products to ensure they do not contain harmful substances including azo dyes. Our testing has recorded NIL harmful chemicals.”

Beach Abode Living specialises in providing beautiful, high quality, unique and ‘on trend’ outdoor soft furnishings that are UV, water, and mildew-resistant. The triple-treatment keeps beach-style products looking great outdoors longer and enables everyone to appreciate and enjoy the great Australian lifestyle. Many bright, reversible, mix and match designs allow for stunning, effortless coordination of any indoor/outdoor room. Beach Abode Living products are inspired by the sea and coastal living and designed in Australia.

Learn how to create a safe azo dye free home and lifestyle that makes every day a holiday at


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 Avoid azo dyes
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 Azo dye recalls

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