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International standards and guides for the compilation of MSDS

A recent international standard was published by the ISO (International Organization for Standardisation). This standard - "Safety Data Sheet for Chemical Products - Part 1: Content and order of sections" (ISO 11014-1) - specifically defines:

  • the general layout of MSDSs
  • 16 headings with standardised wording
  • the numbering and order of these headings
  • the information items required to complete an MSDS

The objective of this standard is to "create consistency in providing information on safety, health and environmental matters for chemical products". The 16 section MSDS headings in the ISO standard are essentially the same as those adopted previously by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the European Union (or European Communities), and the American National Standards Institute. This MSDS format is often called the ILO 16-heading format or the ANSI format.

You can get the ISO-standards here.


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