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VeilleNanos - Census of consumer products containing nanos

Census of consumer products containing nanos

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Tracking of consumer products containing nanos

By the AVICENN team – Last added November 2022

How do we know if the products we buy contain nanomaterials? They are present in all types of everyday objects: cosmetics, clothing, household appliances, sports equipment, glass and building materials, food, cars, etc.

While waiting for thelabelling of nanomaterials in cosmetics, biocides and food to be fully effective, consumers can turn to the few existing inventories. Far from being exhaustive, and of limited reliability, they are nevertheless for the moment the only tools on which to rely.

This very unsatisfactory situation is not inevitable. The work in progress to improve the r-nano register should remedy this – AVICENN will follow it closely!

Publicly available censuses

At the international level

The Nanotechnology Products Database (NPD), created in 2015, references nearly 10,000 products in 2022.

At the European level

A report by the European Observatory for Nanomaterials (EUON) published in 2022 estimates that there are 2,200 products containing nanomaterials on the European marketCf.1Study of the EU market for nanomaterials, including substances, uses, volumes and key operators, EUON, 2022.

The European platform NanoData platform counts, in June 2022, 997 products containing nanos.

In Denmark, the Danish Nanodatabase, is the most comprehensive and up-to-date census of nanoproducts marketed in EuropeIt was2put online in April 2012 by the Danish Consumer Council, the Danish Ecological Council and theTechnical University of Denmark3(which has maintained it ever since)… An English language version is available. Available at, this inventory has passed the 5000 mark of products available for sale in Europe at the end of 2020, in stores or on the Internet, containing manufactured nanomaterials. The Danish Nanodatabase is currently the most extensive inventory on the European market4It is possible to notify the authors of this inventory of any product found to add it, by going to the following page: http: // An analysis of the registry was published in late 2020 in Nature Nanotechnology: Advances and challenges towards consumerization of nanomaterials, by Steffen Foss Hansen and co-authors from the Technical University of Denmark.


– At the European level:

  • A 2010 inventory conducted jointly by BEUCEuropean Consumers’ Organisation andANEC listed 475 consumer products reported to contain nanomaterials present on the European market in 2010, with a majority of health and fitness products. More information here.
  • The inventory “Nanomaterials in consumer products: Update of products on the European market in 2010” by theNational Institute of Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), commissioned by the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority(VWA) and published in 2011, counted 858 products in 2010. The fastest growing product categories were personal care and cosmetics.

– At the Member State level

  • In Germany: the database made by the NGO Friends of the Earth identified, in 2020, about 200 consumer products containing nanomaterials on the German market and the NGO invites German consumers to help complete the list.

  • In Switzerland, a distributor published in April 2010 a
    “list of nanoproducts
    on sale in its stores, on the initiative of the Community of interest of the Swiss retail trade (CICDS)5A Code of Conduct has been adopted by the major Swiss retailers in the field of nano in which they commit themselves to request information from their manufacturers and suppliers concerning the specific or supposed action of the products, their composition and the possible risks, and to inform the consumers in a transparent way.

Census of products containing nanomaterials by application sector

Dans l'alimentaire
  • In 2012, the Danish Nanodatabase went online; it lists 120 food products in Denmark in March
  • In 2012, the collaborative database Open Food Facts listed the ingredients of many food products available on the French market, including additives that may contain nanoparticles (E171, E551, …)
  • In October 2015, the NGO Center for Food Safety posted an inventory of approximately 300 food products containing nanomaterials in the US, updated in early 2018.
  • In March 2017, the association Agir pour l’Environnement (APE) launched the website, a database listing more than 200 food products suspected of containing nanoparticles (less than 50 by 2022)

Dans les cosmétiques

Censuses exist, but they are currently insufficiently precise and reliable… or inaccessible to the general public.

  • The 1st version of the “catalog” nanomaterials used in cosmetic products placed on the market in the European Union, posted online in mid-June 2017 by the European Commission, does not provide specific product or brand namesThis is just the categories of products in which substances in the nano state are found. At the end of 2019, a second version of the European catalog was published, with a reduced number of nanomaterials compared to the first version of the catalog
  • At the beginning of 2018, the DGCCRF indicated that it was able to identify, thanks to the “Cosmetic Products Notification Portal”(CPNP) of the European Commission, around 250 responsible persons based in France that have declared, at EU level, the use of at least one nanomaterial; more than 11,000 product references are involved, but not publicly available today.
  • In 2019, the association Agir pour l’Environnement (APE) launched the site, a database listing, initially 271 toothpastes suspected of containing nanoparticles of titanium dioxide. By the end of 2021, the number had dropped to 224, or nearly 50 fewer toothpastes.
  • Several other “guides” or “applications” have been made by NGOs or brands to identify nanos in cosmetics or, conversely, to find “nano-free” cosmetics, but their reliability is limited, either because they rely on the (sometimes misleading) statements of manufacturers or because they are too dated:

Dans le secteur du bâtiment et de la construction

The legislation does not yet oblige producers and distributors to label the presence of nanomaterials in their products, unlike in cosmetics, biocides andfood.

The R-nano register does not allow to identify precisely the categories of products concerned (and even less the references of these products).

Nanomaterials do not appear (or very little) either in the Environmental and Sanitary Declaration Sheets (ESDS) or the Safety Data Sheets(SDS).

It is therefore necessary to cross-reference sources6A few documents can help you, including:
– the European NanoData platform (132 nano products in the construction sector in June 2022)
Nano Pigments Inventory, ECHA, 2018: more than 80 nano-sized pigments identified on the European market
– The website allows to find nanomaterials used in construction (glass, metal, …).
– At the beginning of 2016, there were 19 products in the “sealing nanotechnologies” category of the Italian website
Elcosh NANO – Construction Nanomaterial Inventory
In addition to the above, the company has been asked to interview manufacturers and suppliers, with no guarantee that it will be able to identify nanomaterials in finished products – except through laboratory testing.

Censuses by substance

Les recensements de produits contenant du nano-argent

  • Danish NanoDatabase lists more than 500 products containing nano silver in 2018
  • Nano-Silver in Food and Food Contact Products is a list of approximately 60 food products (including packaging) containing nano-silver listed by the Center for Food Safety and published in December 2014
  • 563 articles containing nano-silver at the beginning of 2012 and 80 articles integrating colloidal silver for therapeutic purposes were counted by Manon Berge for her master’s thesis in sociology at the University of Quebec in Montreal entitled “The development of nanosilver; between hygienic representations, techno-scientific determinism and the market: a sociological analysis”.
  • BEUC and ANEC jointly identified 109 products containing nano silver in Europe in 20127see their report Nano – Very small and everywhere, A technological magic silver bullet or a serious safety risk? and the database updated to February 28, 2013.
  • Pages 20-22 of the Friends of the Earth Australia report, Nano-silver: policy failure puts public health at risk, list products containing nano-silver in 2011
  • L’annex of the American petition addressed in 2008 by the NGO ICTA to the EPA for the classification of nanosilver as a pesticide contains nearly 260 products including nano-silver sold to United States and from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, China, New Zealand, and Germany
  • Another source, commercial:, reports nearly 461 products for more than 235 companies as of February 2012, for nano products claiming to contain silver nanoparticles (up from 526 products for more than 264 companies in 2009)

Limitations of existing censuses

Most of these censuses are based on declarations by manufacturers or on assumptions about the composition of products, often without any verification, due to a lack of financial, human and/or technical resources.

Moreover, they are very heavy to maintain… and in fact, most of them have not been updated for several years… or not online anymore.

The difficulty in obtaining reliable information on the presence of nanos in products explains why the apps“Yuka” or“Quel produit?” (from Que Choisir) do not currently offer a search on the presence or absence of nanos in products.

Other indirect ways to identify nanoproducts

In the absence of a reliable and adapted census, the crossing of different sources

In France:

  • In June 2014, the INRS published an Aide au repérage des nanomatériaux en entreprise, ED 6174.
  • lists (as of April 2018) 3548 nanomaterials and 123 pieces of equipment for laboratories and manufacturing. But only 4 of them are located in France… including one producer of aluminum powder.
  • The “Nanotechnology Zone” group on LinkedIn has launched a call to suppliers, producers and distributors of nanomaterials to list their offerings online here (registration required but free)
  • In 2011, a French team (ESIEE IFRIS LATTS) produced various tools with interactive mapping to track the relationships between research locations and technological applications at the global level.
  • The Corporate Invention Board provides access to firms involved in nanotechnology.
  • In 2016, the Besançon CCI organized the Micronora trade show dedicated to micro and nanotechnology, with a list of “nanos” exhibitors.

In Germany:

  • The German Ministry of Education and Research has developed a map of some 2000 producers, users and research laboratories handling nanoparticles
  • In 2017 an international merchant site appeared in Germany: nanobay. It lists 1611 products as of June 2018

In England:

In Spain:

In India:

In China

In the USA

  • The Nanotechnology Consumer Products Inventory, started in 2006 (no longer updated since late 2014)
  • understandingnano, created between 2007 and 2014…) publishes directories of products and manufacturers, by topic. But there is no update date.
  • A 2019 market research report on the uses of nanos in aeronautics in the United States and the global market. The report provides information on the manufacturers:
Ailleurs sur le web
  • AnCatt produces anti-corrosion paints (aircraft, marine and automotive uses), including AnCatt Miracle iBarrier ™ with Conductive Polymer Nano Dispersion (CPND) said to be a “non-toxic, environmentally friendly product that outperforms zinc-based coatings by six times in longevity.” This would be an alternative to zinc…
  • Applied Thin Films
  • FlightShield offers paints and varnishes for aircraft and automobiles
  • Glonatech uses carbon nanotubes and displays its distribution network in Europe
  • Triple (?)
  • CHOOSE NanoTech is focused on industrial (aircraft, automotive) and consumer products, and also has a distribution network in Europe.
  • General Nano: the products are clearly named “nano”.
  • HR ToughGuard: Surface coating products are used in the following areas: Aviation, Automotive, Land and sea transportation, wind turbines and solar panels
  • Surfactis Technologies is a French company that manufactures surface modification products, oleophobic and hydrophobic, including anti graffiti
  • Tesla NanoCoatings manufactures anti-corrosion products containing carbon nanotubes combined with zinc.

Use the inventories of patents filed on nanos

  • Searching for patents filed on nanos is possible here on, but it does not indicate the use of these patents nor the marketing.
  • a site launched in 2010 with the support of the Iran Nanotechnology Initiative Council (INC) which offers a remarkable inventory, which lists in 2020 more than 8900 products from 284 firms in 62 countries. from patents of the European Patent Office (EPO) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). In addition, these two organizations launched a cooperative global patent document classification system (CPC) in January 2013, effective November 2016: http: //

More information to come ?

The situation could gradually improve..:

… thanks to nano registers?

France is the first country to have a register of nanomaterials marketed on its territory; desired by many actors, the “annual declaration of substances in the nanoparticulate state” has made it possible to implement an R-nano register but the data collected is not accessible to the public for the moment: it remains confidential, in the name of respect for industrial or commercial secrecy, and only summaries that are not very usable are published. Fortunately, the French r-nano register will be improved and it has started to spread to other European countries. A European-wide harmonization of various national initiatives taken or envisaged by the Member States is strongly desired by the civil society; a European register of nanoproducts would indeed allow for better visibility, but this perspective has not been retained so far by the European Commission, although theregistration of nanomaterials in REACH struggles to move forward… In the long run, however, such a register would be a very powerful tool.

… thanks to European regulations that have made the labeling of nanomaterials mandatory in certain sectors?

These labelling obligations, which are only valid for cosmetics, biocides and food, are only very rarely implemented by companies. The information made available to the public is therefore very limited…

Une remarque, une question ? Cette fiche réalisée par AVICENN a vocation à être complétée et mise à jour. N'hésitez pas à apporter votre contribution.

Les prochains RDV nanos

NanoSafe conference 2023 (CEA, Grenoble)
  • 8th International Conference on Health Issues for a Responsible Approach to Nanomaterials
  • From June 5 to 9, 2023
  • Organizer: French Atomic Energy and Alternative Energies Commission(CEA)
  • Website:…
How the world deals with Materials on the Nanoscale – Responsible Use and Challenges (OECD-BMUV, Berlin)
  • International Conference from June 22 to 23, 2023
  • Organizers: OECD, German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection(BMUV)
  • Website: https: //…
São Paulo School of Advanced Science on Nanotechnology, Agriculture & Environment (SPSAS NanoAgri&Enviro, São Paulo)
São Paulo
  • From July 3 to 15, 2023 in São Paulo
  • Organizer: FABESP
  • Application from November 18 to February 05. Registration fees and travel expenses are covered.
  • Speakers: see the complete program here.

This sheet was originally created in February 2019

Notes & références

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