CPSIA Update: Kopfschmerz

By February 13, 2009Regulations, Trade

Happened upon this news release from the German offices of Intertek, a global testing and products safety firm, “‘Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act’ = Erschwerter Handel mit den USA?” or, in English, “‘Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act’ = More difficult doing business with the U.S.?”

The company is holding a seminar in Leinfelden-Echterdingen for German businesses potentially affected by the new law, which certainly has produced additional work for  testing labs — include European ones. The news release states, “German and international firms are alarmed by these developments.”

Highlights from the release (our quick and dirty translation):

The CPSIA affects more than 15,000 consumer goods such as household products, sporting and recreational goods and school-related products.

According to the assessment of neutral journalists, the CPSIA represents the most comprehensive reworking of U.S. consumer product safety law since 1972, when the CPSC was established by the Consumer Product Safety Act (CPSA). The new law has a much broader application and potentially affects all manufacturers, importers, wholesalers and retailers of consumer goods.

Among the most noticeable provisions of the CPSIA are the wide-ranging bans on lead and chemical softening agents (phthalates) in children’s products; independent testing and certifications of imported children’s products; substantially higher financial penalties; more authority for the CPSC over product recalls, as well as stronger consumer protection efforts through the involvement of other federal authorities, foreign consumer product agencies and health agencies at the state level.

German and international firms are alarmed by these developments. In this seminar, we will clarify the impact of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act on your daily business in dealing with the U.S. market.

As for the post’s headline, Kopfschmerz means headache. Ouch.

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