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Why Vinyl School Supplies Make Sense

Aug 2014

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It’s back to school time. Parents are working through their kids’ shopping lists and sorting the must haves from the nice-to-have items. They’re loading shopping carts, standing in cashier lines, and looking for deals.

It is also the time of year where there’s a lot of competing information about what products to buy and what to avoid—and, frankly, a lot of misinformation too.

Add vinyl into that mix. The bottom line, however, is that vinyl school supplies are safe, durable, and make a lot of sense from a dollars-and-cents perspective too.

Backpacks and Other Vinyl School Supplies Are Safe

Much of the watercooler conversation about vinyl products surrounds the additives. Plasticizers and other vinyl additives allow school supplies to be durable, flexible, efficient, and meet the demands of the classroom. Because of vinyl’s physical nature, additives are tightly held in the fabricated product, limiting the potential for human contact or release.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) tests these products regularly and sets acceptable levels of phthalate exposure.

There is over 50 years of research and accumulated scientific data from both the government and independent review bodies that suggest that phthalates do not pose a threat to human health or wellbeing. A 2009 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for example, found that phthalates do not pose a health hazard because the chemical is metabolized and quickly excreted—and does not accumulate in the body.

Not only can vinyl be used in children’s backpacks, but it is also used in wiring. Vinyl-jacketed wiring powers computers, tablets, and TVs. It’s also used in fiber optics and wiring in the walls. Vinyl wiring also meets the National Fire Protection Association’s stringent requirements.

Vinyl Products Are Durable

Vinyl products have proven to be durable over time, which means more cost savings for parents. Their durability results from the stability of the vinyl molecule; that stability allows products to resist decomposition and withstand environmental exposure—and the shellacking young children often put them through.

Schools often choose vinyl materials to meet the demands of classrooms and other high-trafficked areas. Many vinyl products are already being used throughout the classroom, including binders, lunchboxes, desks, flooring, and wallcovering.

That Vinyl Backpack Is Easy To Clean

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Finally, did you know that vinyl materials are easy to clean?

Many vinyl materials are nonporous, preventing scuffs and marks from the pounding kids put them through. They also resist the buildup of grime, lessening the surface area on which pathogens can adhere. Vinyl products, from that backpack your child dragged through a mud puddle to seat cushions and floor mats, are easily cleaned with simple soap and water. The infection risk (and yuck factor) are thus nicely reduced.