Product Safety Regulations—What Industry Professionals Need To Know For 2012


As of January 1, 2012, manufacturers and importers of consumer products are required to show proof of compliance with third-party testing for lead in content and phthalate limits established by the Consumer Products Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) of 2008. The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) limits the total allowable lead content in children’s products to 100 parts per million.

What The Regulations Mean For You
Companies that manufacture, decorate or import promotional products must have children’s products third-party tested for the following standards:

• Lead content in children’s metal products
• Lead content in children’s non-metal products
• Lead in paint
• Small parts
• Lead in children’s metal jewelry
• Flammability of clothing textiles
• Flammability of vinyl plastic film
• Flammability of children’s sleepwear (sizes 0-6x and 7-14)

A children’s product is defined as a consumer product designed or intended primarily for use by children 12 years of age or younger.

Regulations also require any children’s toys or child-care articles be tested by a third-party laboratory for phthalates. Inaccessible component parts of children’s toys and child-care articles are exempted from testing.

A children’s toy is defined as a consumer product designed or intended by the manufacture for a child 12 years of age or younger for use by the child when the child plays. A child-care article is defined as a consumer product designed or intended by the manufacturer to facilitate sleep or the feeding of children age three and younger to help such children with sucking or teething.

For more guidance on whether or not a product could be a children’s product, toy or child-care article, review PPAI’s Guide To Navigating The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act and PPAI Promotional Products TurboTestTM, the industry’s first product safety roadmap.

Businesses that distribute promotional products must be able to provide documentation of compliance to clients and the CPSC upon request.

Because distributors are often the only point of contact for clients, they serve as the link between the product, the buyer’s intent for the program and the manufacturing of the product. Many of these regulations apply to products based on the intended audience. Distributors have an obligation to determine the product’s intended audience and share this information with the importer, decorator or manufacturer.

Review Product Safety: Ask & Answer to find a list of questions to ask a client and the supplier.

Exemptions For Small-Batch Manufacturers
Some manufacturers in the promotional products industry may qualify for relief from these new third-party testing requirements.

A company may be considered a small-batch manufacturer if it:

• Reports total gross revenues of $1 million or less from the sale of all consumer products and
• Manufactures no more than 7,500 units of the tested product in the previous calendar year

If a company qualifies as a small-batch manufacturer and registers with the CPSC, it may be exempt from the third-party testing requirements of the following rules (but compliance is still required):

• ASTM F963-08 Toy Safety Standard;
• Total Lead Content in Children’s Products;
• Ban on certain phthalates in children’s toys and certain child-care articles;

For the list of exempted standards, visit the CPSC online.

Small-batch manufacturers are still required to third-party test for compliance in some safety regulations—such as lead-in-paint limits and the ban on small parts. The law requires all manufacturers, importers and private labelers of children’s products to certify that the children’s products comply with all applicable safety rules.

Small-batch manufacturers can now register online with the CPSC.

If you have questions or need more information, visit PPAI online.

One Response to Product Safety Regulations—What Industry Professionals Need To Know For 2012

  1. Jerry Chiat (Acclaimed Promotions) says:

    We are an ASI Distributor

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