Q: I just got a revised SDS for a product I’ve been using for years. Why is the new version so different from the old one?
A: There could be several reasons. A couple of examples are:
• New scientific data could have changed the classification of the chemical, or one of the chemicals in a mixture, revising the information in Section 2.
• The country could have adopted a newer version of the GHS guidelines, changing the information that is required to be provided in the SDS. Q: I received an SDS that was written 5 years ago. Can I trust that it is accurate?
A: The provider is responsible for maintaining the accuracy of the information in the SDS. My research didn’t find a clear answer to when an SDS needed to be revised except in the case where new information about the product has changed the classification. In this case, the SDS should be revised within 90 days. If the provider says that this is the most current SDS, you must accept that there have been no changes to the classification and that the document is accurate. Q: With GHS, are SDS’s for the same product the same in every country?
A: Not necessarily. Each country has its own Hazard Communications laws and may choose to include specific revisions of the GHS guideline or add additional lists of chemicals that they consider hazardous. This is one reason why getting the SDS for the country where the product will be used is important.