Implemented by European Union regulations concerning attaching information on products’ labels allow consumers to choose commodities made from materials that are safe for health and the natural environment. Among different certifications, CE marking is very important. What information does it give and why is it worth paying attention to?
What does CE mean?
CE marking (Conformité Européenne) may be defined as a declaration of conformity, that can be found on products that meet the requirements of the applicable EU directives (so called New Approach). These directives involve waiving trade barriers, that have occurred as a result of unifying ruling quality standards. Simplified approach allowed to create universal legal acts, which determine basic requirements, that all categories of commodities distributed in the common area should meet. Thanks to CE marking, it is possible to inform a consumer about the safety of using a certain product. However, it should be recognized that producers place a declaration symbol on their own responsibility, after proving that they have received positive results of conformity assessment procedure.
CE marking – when is it obligatory?
A manufacturer, after placing a CE marking on a product, thereafter can sell it within the area of the Single European Market, which embraces 30 countries, giving a possibility to make products available to almost 500 millions of clients. Without CE marking, an entrepreneur will not receive a conformance and can not launch the product into the market. It is particularly important in case of products made in or imported from countries outside the EU. It is worth to take into account detailed regulations concerning obligatory use of CE marking, as one may get fined for negligence such as placing the mark on a product that does not meet the requirements, purposely placing a mark to misinform a customer or a lack of reliable conformity assessment. Discussed European directives do not involve the products outside the European Economic Area as well as 3 categories of products: packaging and packaging waste as well as transeuropean systems of conventional or high-speed rail.
How to get CE marking?
A producer or an authorized representative may place the CE marking on the product retaining a full responsibility for it, thus one needs to be sure that the given product meets all of the requirements listed in the directives. It is advised to involve a third-party into the process of conformity assessment, who is a notified certification body. One can also use services of trusted laboratory. After receiving a special certification of conformity, the producer should make sure that the CE marking is in the right format and size. To properly fit the CE marking with the product, one should always keep the proportion as described in the stipulated mark. If the directive does not contain detailed information, the producer is obliged to use CE marking with the minimum height of 5 mm.
CE marking entails with increasing the freedom of trade as well as the flow of commodities within the EU area. Every producer is allowed to check if a given product meets the product safety requirements as well as if it is manufactured with care for the environmental protection and health of people. Before receiving CE marking, it is advised to get a certification of conformity issued by notified unit or laboratory.