The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is to vote on recommendations made by Intertek and the American Apparel and Footwear Association (AAFA) related to the testing of children's goods.

The CPSC's approval of their guidance document on Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) testing and certification procedures would codify Intertek and AAFA's recommendations as formal, accepted agency policy.

Intertek said it anticipates that successful adoption of the policies would "save manufacturers millions while improving reliability of product testing" for products including apparel.

The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA) mandates certification and testing requirements for such products, but Intertek said testing labs are restricted to test only final finished products for defined safety standards, such as lead paint, under the policy.

It said because children's products are often sprayed or painted in small areas, a large number of finished product samples needed to be provided, destroyed and discarded in the testing process, representing an enormous cost to manufacturers and related businesses.

"In response to this dilemma, Intertek and the AAFA asked for formal recognition of three specific test methods to detect lead in paint and other surface coatings," a statement said.

The two groups had requested the CPSC to approve processes of "spray sampling" (painting an entire product with the same color of paint, giving lab workers more surface coating to test), "multiple stamping" (stamping products repeatedly with the same paint or ink appliqué to garner a larger sample), and "finished component testing" (allowing painted buttons, for example, to be tested before they are sewn onto the garment).