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Harmonised classification of titanium dioxide remains valid

France and European Commission appeal against titanium dioxide judgement

On Wednesday 8 February, the French government announced that it will appeal against the judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CFI) of 23 November 2022. In the judgment, the CFI annulled the classification and labelling of powdered titanium dioxide (TiO2) particles with an aerodynamic diameter below 10 µm as probably carcinogenic (category 2) by inhalation for certain powder forms. The judgement could be appealed to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) within two months and ten days. France, which was part of the group of defendants, and the European Commission made use of this right in due time.

Titanium dioxide remains classified as potentially carcinogenic by inhalation | Lifocolor
France appeals judgement

According to a press release from the French Ministry of Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion and the Ministry of Energy Transition, France has filed an appeal against the decision of the General Court of the European Union to annul the classification of titanium dioxide as carcinogenic, arguing that the General Court exceeded the limits of its judicial review by making its own assessment and interpretation of the scientific data. Moreover, this court decision would represent a setback for the health protection of European citizens and workers who handle this substance.

The harmonised classification of powdered titanium dioxide thus remains in place and the judgement of 23 Novmeber 2022 will not become legally binding. It remains to be seen whether the appeal will be successful or not. The Titanium Dioxide Manufacturers Association (TDMA) has published a press release on the appeal.

Titanium dioxide is used in a variety of industrial applications, including paints, certain polymers, foodstuffs or pharmaceuticals, to achieve a white gloss and colour.

Last year we reported on the classification by the EU Commission and the resulting impact on the masterbatch industry. Read the interview here.

More information on the ruling on the pages of the European Court of Justice.