Skip to main content


Formaldehyde is used in laboratories for room or equipment decontamination (eg microbiological safety cabinets). From January 2016, it has been classified as a Category 1b carcinogen under the Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP) Regulation. This means that use of formaldehyde will be restricted to professional use only. The classification also has significant implications for the approval of formaldehyde as an active substance under Biocidal Products Regulation. The long term use of formaldehyde will be subject to further restrictions. Users need be looking into alternative gaseous disinfectants for rooms and equipment, whilst there is time to do so.