Gary Perry, MD of Altecnic, discusses the changes coming in January to CE marking as a result of the UK leaving the EU and the implications it will bring for merchants and their customers.
You will probably have heard, seen and know about ‘CE marking’. It appears on many products that are traded on the single market in the European Economic Area. The letters ‘CE’ mean that:
- The manufacturer has checked that these products meet EU safety, health or environmental requirements
- The product complies with EU legislation
It also allows free movement of products within the European market.
New UKCA marking
With the UK leaving the EU, the Government has created a new UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) marking which will apply to most goods currently subject to the CE marking for items that are being sold in Great Britain.
The new UKCA marking can be used from 1 January 2021 and to allow businesses time to adjust to the change, they will still be able to use the CE marking for a further year, and, in the majority of cases, until January 2022.
However, the UKCA marking will not be recognised on the EU market or in Northern Ireland. So, products currently requiring a CE marking will still need one for sale in the EU from 1 January 2021.
Goods can carry both the CE and UKCA markings so long as they are fully compliant with both UK and EU regulations.
When the UKCA marking will be used
Companies will need to use the new UKCA marking after 1 January 2021 if all of the following apply:
- the product is for the market in Great Britain
- it is covered by legislation which requires the UKCA marking
- it requires mandatory third-party conformity assessment
- conformity assessment has been carried out by a UK conformity assessment body and the conformity assessment files haven’t been transferred from the UK body to an EU recognised body before 1 January 2021
However, this does not apply to existing stock, for example if the product was fully manufactured and ready to place on the market before 1 January 2021. In this situation, the goods can still be sold in Great Britain with a CE marking even if covered by a certificate of conformity issued by a UK body.
From January 2022, the UKCA marking must, in the majority of cases, be affixed directly to the product.
What you need to look out for
As a result of these changes, merchants and installers alike will need to remain vigilant that the products that they sell and buy are marked correctly and therefore safe and legal to install in the UK. Without the proper marking, the products being used may not be manufactured to high or legal standards.
What we are doing
Here at Altecnic, we pride ourselves on only supplying approved and accredited products into the plumbing and heating market. To this end, we are working with all relevant industry partners to keep ahead of the changes in product marking regulation so we can assist our customers through the transition. Our aim is to make the switch from CE marking to UKCA markings a smooth one for all our stakeholders.
To find out more about the UKCA marking and the latest information, head to the Government’s Business and Industry web pages by heading to: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/placing-manufactured-goods-on-the-market-in-great-britain-from-1-january-2021
For more information on Altecnic’s range of products and services and to download its latest Product Guide, enter https://www.altecnic.co.uk/images/pdf/Altecnic_Product_Guide_Domestic.pdf in your browser.