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General Product Safety (Consumer Products 2011/95/EU)

General Product Safety Directive

Consumer products that fall outside the scope of any CE marking legislation must comply with the requirements of the General Product Safety Directive 2001/95/EU. This directive applies when the specific European safety regulations of certain product categories are missing. These products do not require CE marking but must meet the general safety requirements for consumer products before they can be traded freely on the European Union market.

The General Product Safety Directive obliges the manufacturers to place on the market only safe products. The safe product is the product that complies with the relevant European standards. In other cases, the product safety is assessed on the basis of:

  • not binding the national standards;
  • recommendations of the European Commission with guidelines on product safety assessment;
  • the product safety codes in the sector concerned;
  • the current state of art and technology;
  • reasonable consumer expectations concerning safety.

Manufacturers must provide the consumer with information that enables them to form an opinion on product safety during the normal or reasonably foreseeable period of use. In addition, manufacturers should take appropriate actions to prevent risks, including withdrawal from the market, appropriate and effective warning of consumers and the recall of relevant products.

CE marking consumer products

Distributors must help to ensure the product compliance with the applicable safety requirements, in particular by not supplying products, which they know do not comply with those requirements.

The General Product Safety Directive does not require the affixing of a CE marking or issuing an EU Declaration of Conformity. However, manufacturers are obliged to comply with the Directive.

How can Certification Company help you?

Certification Company assist the complete safety inspection in accordance with the General Product Safety Directive 2001/95/EC.

In addition to complete certification you can contact us for the following services:

  • Classification research to determine relevant requirements;
  • Product conformity tests based on the European (harmonized) standards;
  • Compiling and verifying the Technical Files;
  • Drafting and checking the User Instructions;
  • Compiling and verifying the Declaration of Conformity;

General Product Safety step-by-step

The General Product Safety Directive contains the legal obligations for each type of economic operators (manufacturer, importer, distributor). The following step-by-step plan has been drawn up for the manufacturer. 

  1. Product classification: Determining whether the product falls into the scope of the General Product Safety Directive and classification of consumer product on the basis of established criteria.
  2. Economic operator classification: Defining the role of economic operator withing the General Product Safety Directive.
  3. Conformity procedure: this can be divided into the following parts
    • Carry out the product tests based on European (harmonized) standards;
    • Draw up the procedures to ensure the conformity of series production;
    • Provide identification element of the product and the economic operator;
    • Provide instructions and safety information
    • Develop procedures for taking corrective measures.
  1. Technical Files: Drawing up the Technical Files (including User Manual) based on which the product conformity can be assessed.
  2. Declaration of Conformity: Drafting the Declaration of Conformity, declaring that the product complies with the General Product Safety Directive.

Be aware! Steps 4 and 5 are not mandatory based on the General Product Safety Directive. Those procedures are derived from sectoral Directives and Regulations concerning the CE marking.

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General product safety directive

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