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On Thursday 18th, December the EU Parliament accepted the revision of the EU toy directive. The old Directive 88/378/EC has been in force since 1989.
Definitions and specification of the obligations of economic operators are more detailed.
Manufacturers (product files must be kept for 10 years, toys must bear type/serial numbers) Authorized representatives Importers Distributors A requirement for an EC declaration of conformity drawn up by the manufacturer is added. Similar to other CE directives the proposal is to supply a declaration. A copy of the declaration must be kept for 10 years after the toy has been placed on the market.
It is specified safety assessments/risk assessments must be carried out. Manufacturers are obliged toidentify any hazards that a toy may present. The assessment must be kept in the technical documentation.
Chemical Properties The revision strengthens the requirements for chemical properties:
Substances that are susceptible to provoke cancer, classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic for reproduction (CMR) are not allowed in toys
55 listed allergenic fragrances may not be used in toys, only technically unavoidable traces are allowed up to 100 ppm
The current directive restricts the migration of 8 elements (antimony,arsenic, barium, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury and selenium) for which limits and test methods are specified in the standard EN 71-3. Many new elements are added and migration limits allowed are specified
Mechanical Properties The changes to the requirements for mechanical properties are:
Toys firmly attached to food are prohibited
Toys sold together with food must have their own packaging
New provisions for noise emitted toys will be established. The Commission will mandate CEN to revise the standards regarding acoustic requirements
The Commission will mandate CEN to elaborate requirements for children’s books made of cardboard and paper
Warnings Strengthened rules regarding warnings: accurate, visible, clearly legible and easy to read warnings shall be visible at the point of sale, including on line shops
The misleading use of the warning “ not suitable for children under 3 years” is now legally prohibited Entry into Force It is expected the new directive will be published in the Official Journal in the EU beginning of 2009. The transitional period will be 2 years after publication of the new directive. For chemical requirements the transitional period will be 4 years. During the transitional period both (the old and the new) directives can be used to show compliance.
Information Source
New EU Toy Directive Adopted by the EU Parliament (PDF 122 KB)
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