The toxic risks presented by imported furniture will be discussed at the AFA Furniture Industry Training Conference in Melbourne.

International expert in product safety, Stephan Pesch will outline the dangers of imported furniture commonly found in Australian homes, with tests indicating the presence of harmful AZO dyes in imported household furniture items. Stephan Pesch heads the furniture division of TUV Rheinland China.

TUV Rheinland is an international authority on safety and security, with extensive experience in testing materials, products, plant and machinery.

According to Mr Pesch, Australian-made furniture, which is subject to some of the world’s most stringent safeguards, does not pose any risk to consumers.

However, imported furniture contains AZO dyes, carcinogenic flame-retardants and formaldehyde; buying imported furniture therefore puts the health of Australian families at risk.

The AFA Furniture Industry Training Conference will feature several high profile speakers including Assistant Minister for Education, the Honourable Sussan Ley, Dr Swee Mak of the CSIRO and Cameron Baker of Manufacturing Skills Australia.

The AFA Furniture Industry Training Conference is taking place as part of the Australian International Furniture Exhibition, which is being held at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne from 11 July to 13 July 2014.