News

Requirements concerning the safety of consumer goods and other products are constantly changing due to the advancement of scientific knowledge and its implementation by legislative bodies. Hermes Hansecontrol ensures that you are up-to-date on all current topics. You can also find current information on projects by Hermes Hansecontrol here.

News for March 2018

In an EU-wide project, the European ECHA Chemicals Agency conducted more than 5,000 product inspections in 27 European countries. Overall, it was found that 18 percent of the random samples failed to comply with legally prescribed restrictions. The large amount of plasticizers (phthalates) in toys was cause for particular concern. Indeed, 20 percent of the toys inspected contained bis(2 ethyl hexyl) phthalate (DEHP), dibutyl phthalate (DBP) or benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) in concentrations exceeding permissible amounts. Cadmium was also detected in soldering fillers (14 percent) and asbestos fibers were found in used products such as catalytic heaters, thermos flasks and brake pads (14 percent). Many of these products were presumably manufactured before the restrictions came into effect. The inspectors also found high concentrations of chromium VI in leatherware (13 percent of the products tested) as well as cadmium in jewelry (12 percent).

The report once again showed how important it is for responsible companies to receive relevant information from their suppliers – and, in case of doubt, to take a proactive approach by having their products tested. The law enforcement authorities will also continue to enforce the REACh restrictions by analyzing further products on the market. In cooperation with independent providers of test services such as Hermes Hansecontrol, manufacturers, vendors, and distributors can minimize their liability risks and financial losses brought about, for example, by a product recall.

If you have any questions on this topic, please get in touch with your respective sales representative in sales department or our order management department at the phone number +49 (0) 40 300 33 73 - 7310 or by email.

All parents know: a trampoline is basically an essential piece of equipment when it comes to playing in one’s own garden. However, the risks it poses are often underestimated. To prevent possible injury, the standard DIN EN 71-14 “Trampolines for domestic use” was developed – with the close cooperation of the DIN Consumer Council. The focus of consumers was primarily on adequate labeling in the form of warning notices on the trampoline. As a result, the following warning notices, among others, are required in accordance with the new standard:
  • Only for household use;
  • Maximum xx kg;
  • Adult supervision required;
  • Specification as to whether the toy is intended for indoor and/or outdoor use;
  • Limit of the duration of uninterrupted use (take regular breaks);
  • Secure and do not use the trampoline in the event of strong winds;
  • Read the user manual;
  • The net should be replaced every year/every (*) years. The time frame is to be defined by the manufacturer.

Furthermore, the standard also contains other requirements, which the manufacturers, vendors and distributors must comply with. Among other things, specifications with respect to stability, a minimum net height, the maximum extension of the jumping mat, the durability of the materials and requirements with respect to areas with a risk of trapping, sharp edges and points. The publication of DIN EN 71-14 marked a small improvement in consumer protection not only on a national level, but also within the entire European economic area. The experts from Hermes Hansecontrol perform all required tests and help companies fulfill the requirements of the market and legislative body. However, the standard excludes certain areas:

  • Trampolines for use as gymnastics equipment, which are provided for under EN 13219;
  • Floating inflatable trampolines, which are provided for under the series of standards EN 15649;
  • Trampolines for use in public playgrounds;
  • Trampolines with an adjustable angle of incline;
  • Inflatable trampolines;
  • Fitness trampolines including trampolines for medical applications;
  • Trampolines with additional features, e.g. tents, basketball hoop;
  • Trampolines for domestic use entrenched at ground level.

If you have any questions on this topic, please get in touch with your respective sales representative in sales department or our order management department at the phone number +49 (0) 40 300 33 73 - 6124 or by email.

Ensuring that furniture has a high level of quality and making this known to consumers is the common goal that has brought Hansecontrol-Cert, with headquarters in Hamburg, together with the German Furniture Quality Assurance Association (Deutsche Gütegemeinschaft Möbel, DGM). Since the beginning of 2018, Hansecontrol Zertifizierungsgesellschaft is now an official supporting member of the DGM. Household appliances and furniture are among the products regularly inspected and certified by the experts. The company has already served as an authorized test center for the GS mark for “Certified Safety” since 2009 and also awards private test marks. The services for the furniture industry include, among other things, mechanical safety and endurance tests, tests with physical criteria such as forces or speeds, chemical analyses, as well as safety tests in the area of electronics, textile physics and fitness for use.

Voluntary compliance with high quality standards

Deutsche Gütegemeinschaft Möbel e.V. (German Furniture Quality Assurance Association) is an association of furniture manufacturers and supporting members from the supplier operations, assembly plants, professional associations, and independent institutes. Since 1963, furniture manufacturers and supplier operations have voluntarily committed to comply with the high DGM quality standards. The requirements are derived from the quality and testing regulations of the “Golden M”, RAL-GZ 430. They guarantee users of certified furniture longevity and proper functioning, safety, health and environmental friendliness. All these factors are tested and verified at independent laboratories. The DGM now has more than 115 members from Germany and abroad. For more information, visit the website.

Click here to see the DGM press release of January 11, 2018 (only in German).

If you have any questions on this topic, please get in touch with your respective sales representative in sales department or our order management department at the phone number +49 (0) 40 300 33 73 - 6124 or by email.

Consumer protection is of paramount importance. Manufacturers, importers and vendors are therefore required to take suitable quality assurance measures. Effective risk management is an integral part of the required quality management – the German Product Safety Act forms the legal framework for these obligations.

What specific steps can and should companies in the consumer goods industry take in order to protect themselves? The initial basis for efficient risk management is defining overarching goals and strategies. Among other things, the task is to define criteria for specific products/product groups according to which risks are classified and evaluated. The methods of risk assessment, responsibilities, the provision of resources, channels of internal and external communication as well as questions relating to required qualification must be clarified.

In the seminar “Putting Risk Management into Practice” on June 19, 2018 in Hamburg, you will learn which basic obligations apply to you based upon the EU legal framework as well as how you can minimize possible liability risks. In this context, it will also be explained how you, as a company, can comply with your documentation obligation.

Here you will find all the important information about content and conditions for participation (only in German). If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us by calling +49 (0) 40 300 33 73 - 13 30 or by sending an email.

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