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OSHA/WHMIS Chemical Labeling Standards

In June 2015, OSHA revised its Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to incorporate the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of chemical labeling, which created more structured and comprehensive chemical labeling requirements. In Canada, Health Canada also revised their 1988 implementation of the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS).

These revised standards give employers and industries - including teachers and educators - the right to understand the hazards associated with the chemicals they work with or around, including in the classroom and laboratory setting.

The new regulations provide vital information on the label that is easy to identify and understand. The related SDS, with its own new format, contains more detailed information and should be used in conjunction with the labels.

Health Canada Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS)

Health Canada Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) requires similar label information to the OSHA requirements with these notable exceptions;

Supplier information must include the name, address, and telephone number of the Canadian manufacturer or Canadian importer with two exceptions:

  1. If the hazardous product is sold by a distributor, the distributor's contact information may replace the initial supplier's contact information.
  2. If an importer imports hazardous products that are for their own use and which are not for sale, the foreign supplier contact information may remain on the label.
Labels must be in both English and French. Both English and French information may be on the same label, or there may be a separate labels for English and French.

Every chemical label and SDS for Ward's Chemicals meets the latest OSHA/WHMIS requirements.

For help reading your chemical label, or updating your existing chemicals with new labels that match the latest requirements, contact the Ward's Science Plus Chemistry team at sciencehelp@vwr.com.

For complete and detailed information about the latest OSHA Hazard Communication Standard, visit OSHA's website.