The chemicals industry plays a pivotal role in producing petrochemicals, polymers, basic inorganics, specialities and consumer chemicals in Europe. European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) implements the EU’s chemicals legislation to protect health, safety and the environment. Classification, Labeling and Packaging (CLP) regulation helps in identifying hazardous chemicals and informs users throughout the EU about their hazards. The regulation ensures a good understanding of the chemical substances and mixtures and facilitates free flow of goods.
Recently, ECHA released a guidance on labeling and packaging requirements for hazardous chemical substances, intending to assist suppliers of chemical substances and mixtures. According to the guidance, the following suppliers must ensure that their substances and mixtures are labeled and packaged as per the CLP regulation:
- Importers of substances and mixtures
- Manufacturers of substances
- Distributers of substances and mixtures, including retailers
- Downstream users of mixtures and substances, including formulators
Labeling Rules for Substances and Mixtures
According to the guidance, any substance or mixture classified as hazardous substances under the CLP Article 17 must display a label with the following elements:
- Name, address and telephone number of the supplier
- Quantity of the substance or mixture
- Product identifiers
- Hazard pictograms
- Hazard statements
- Relevant signal word
- Appropriate precautionary statements
- A section for supplemental information
For mixtures falling under the scope of CLP Article 45 and Annex VIII, a Unique Formula Identifier (UFI) must also be added/printed/affixed to the label.
According to the CLP Regulation, the label must be written in the official language/ languages of the Member States where the substance/mixture is going to be placed. Suppliers can either provide multi-language labels covering all the official languages of the respective countries where the substance or mixture is/going to be supplied or can provide separate labels for each country aligning with the regional language standards.
Packaging Rules for Substances and Mixtures
The requirements for packaging of hazardous chemical substances/mixtures are provided in the CLP Article 35, which include the following:
- The packaging must be designed, constructed and fastened in such a way that the contents do not escape.
- The materials of the packaging and fastening must not be damaged by the contents. Also, when in contact, they should not be liable to form hazardous compounds with the products.
- Strong and solid packaging to ensure that they will not loosen.
- Packaging must be fitted with replaceable fastening devices to allow repeated fastening without the misplacement of contents.
- The packaging must not attract children or mislead the consumers.
- Do not use similar packaging designs for foodstuff/animal feed/medicinal/cosmetic products which may mislead the consumers.
For substances and mixtures that are supplied to the general public must:
- Use child-resistant fastening (CRF), also called child-resistant closure
- Use tactile warnings of danger (TWDs)
- Provide additional safety measures based on the product
In a nutshell, the European Chemicals industry provides excellent opportunities to the suppliers of chemical substances and mixtures. Therefore, to enter the EU market, it is essential to understand every aspect of the regulations under the ECHA's chemical legislation such as EU REACH, CLP and BPR. Get in touch with Freyr for a smooth Regulatory sail. Stay informed. Stay updated.