Latest Crumb Rubber Research Study Supports its Safety

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Act Global worked in collaboration with an organic chemist PhD and three testing laboratories in New York, France and Texas to prepare the latest research study on crumb rubber safety. Results support the safety of crumb rubber and show no chemicals to be present at levels of concern.

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This collective body of data supports that this sample of crumb rubber is safe.

The latest objective, comprehensive crumb rubber research study supports the existing body of data that the infill material is safe as used in synthetic turf fields.

Act Global today released the independent testing and published analysis, performed in cooperation with a regarded organic chemist Dr. R. William Tilford and three accredited testing institutes. Dr. Tilford is an unbiased third-party expert, with a doctorate in organic chemistry, fourteen years of experience as a research chemist, and a thorough understanding of how organic molecules react with each other and their environments.

In a recent episode of NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, the show raised concerns regarding the health risks of crumb rubber infill. The episode used the word “fear” in its show, while also issuing the following comments:

"...The International Agency for Research on Cancer labels four carcinogens [arsenic, benzene, cadmium, nickel] while adding that at low levels of exposure, they are considered safe.”

"...There's no research directly linking crumb rubber exposure to cancer.”

"...Many researchers, states and localities defend the turf safety.”

Dr. Tilford’s research paper analyzed not only the four carcinogens noted by NBC, but test data of 83 substances including trace metals, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and semi-volatiles/PAHs. Analysis concludes that no substances were measured at a higher concentration than what may be found in background typical air, soil and surrounding environments, and many substances were completely undetected. Standardized, modern and objective test protocols were utilized per US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and European Union toy safety standards.

“This collective body of data supports that this sample of crumb rubber is safe,” cited Tilford in the study. “The analyzed samples offered no apparent hazard.”

“We commit the resources to support independent and credible research, because our top priority is always the safety and welfare of synthetic turf users,” said John Baize, owner of Act Global. “We are pleased with the results as they are consistent with numerous other studies.”

More than 50 studies have been conducted during the past two decades which review the health effects of crumb rubber. These have analyzed the material as it pertains to inhalation, ingestion and dermal contact, as well as cancer. Comparable to the Act Global Crumb Rubber Safety Study, the preponderance of evidence shows no negative health effects associated with crumb rubber in synthetic turf.

Artificial turf is cost-effective, safe, highly resilient, and improves access to sports for children around the world, explains Baize. A durable synthetic turf pitch can withstand greater usage than natural grass, and accommodate multiple sports and activities, even in inclement weather conditions. According to the Synthetic Turf Council, 11,000 artificial turf fields are in use throughout the United States, saving billions of gallons of water every year.

Together, Tilford and Act Global have published the technical research analysis Act Global Crumb Rubber Safety Study. The research paper and independent lab reports are available from the company by emailing cholman(at)actglobal(dot)com.

Act Global is a world leader in synthetic turf and artificial grass manufacturing. The company’s Xtreme Turf and Xtreme Lawn products replicate natural grass for use in international stadiums, indoor sport centers, synthetic lawns and other synthetic grass uses. Its LiteEarth and AvTurf products add capabilities for landfills and airport applications. Act Global has manufacturing locations in USA, Europe and Asia and installations in over 70 countries. Act Global is notable for currently being the first company in the world that is a FIFA Preferred Producer for Football Turf, Synthetic Turf Council Certified Manufacturer, World Rugby Preferred Turf Producer, and holds an ISO 9001 certification.

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Cassie Holman
Act Global
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