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Clin Toxicol (Phila). 2010 Jan;48(1):28-33. doi: 10.3109/15563650903376097.

The changes in hazard classification and product notification procedures of the new European CLP and Cosmetics Regulations.

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  • 1National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, National Poisons Information Centre, Bilthoven, The Netherlands.



The United Nations Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (UN-GHS) is developed to harmonize the criteria for hazard communication worldwide. The European Regulation on classification, labeling, and packaging of substances and mixtures [CLP Regulation (European Commission, EC) No 1272/2008] will align the existing European Union (EU) legislation to the UN-GHS. This CLP Regulation entered into force on January 20, 2009, and will, after a transitional period, replace the current rules on classification, labeling, and packaging for supply and use in Europe. Both old and new classifications will exist simultaneously until 2010 for substances and until 2015 for mixtures.


The new hazard classification will introduce new health hazard classes and categories, with associated new hazard pictograms, signal words, Hazard (H)-statements, and Precautionary (P)-statements as labeling elements. Furthermore, the CLP Regulation will affect the notification of product information on hazardous products to poisons information centers (PICs).


At this moment product notification widely varies in procedures and requirements across EU Member States. Article 45 of the CLP Regulation contains a provision stating that the EC will (by January 20, 2012) review the possibility of harmonizing product notification. The European Association of Poisons Centres and Clinical Toxicologists (EAPCCT) is recognized as an important stakeholder. For cosmetic products, the new Cosmetics Regulation will directly implement a new procedure for electronic cosmetic product notification in all EU Member States.


Both the CLP Regulation and the Cosmetics Regulation will develop their own product notification procedure within different time frames. Harmonization of notification procedures for both product groups, especially a common electronic format, would be most effective from a cost-benefit viewpoint and would be welcomed by PICs.

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