A contaminated batch of a chemical used to make foam mattresses, and other foam-based products, ended up in part of Europe’s foam production line.
Chemicals giant BASF said that contaminated batches of toluene diisocyanate (TDI), made between 25 August and 29 September 2017, were supplied to 50 customers from a plant in East Germany.
The company is withdrawing the unprocessed TDI as well as unprocessed foam blocks.
TDI is used in mattresses, sofas, cushions, wood coatings and car seats.
Swiss-based Conzzeta AG, confirmed that some of the contaminated TDI had been delivered to a FoamPartner factory in Wolfhausen, Switzerland, and that batches at the factory were in production. Production was temporarily suspended, deliveries were stopped and customers were informed, said the company.
The chemical dichlorobenzene, which was found in significantly higher concentrations than normal in the contaminated batches, is often used as a solvent, an insecticide, and a moth repellent, sometimes in the form of mothballs.
The World Health Organisation classifies para-dichlorobenzene, a member of the dichlorobenzene family, as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B).
BASF has set up a telephone hotline +49 621 60-21919, open from 8 am to 6 pm.