Twice a year, leading candle manufacturers, testing laboratories and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) gather in Columbus, OH to design and improve testing methods to advance the safe use of candles. The Spring 2013 meeting centered on topics including ensuring accessories are fire resistant, testing coatings and paints used on candles and understanding how long a consumer is likely to burn a candle each time they light it.
The safety initiative began in the late 1990’s when the growing popularity of candles had the unintended consequence of increasing home fires attributed to candle use. The National Candle Association (www.candles.org) prompted its membership to get involved, using the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) as the structure to create voluntary consensus standards for safe product. Ohio manufacturers including Renegade Candles (New Albany), Lumi-Lite (Norwich), Root (Medina) and Candle-Lite (Cincinnati); Columbus testing lab SEA; and retailers Bath & Body Works, Yankee and Pier 1 are among the members of the taskforce chaired by Jim Becker of Candle Solutions.
As a result of the work of this team, standards were created for labeling and testing candles that have been successfully rolled out to and used by the candle community. The group will meet again in September.