Protect Yourself, Your Brand and Your Customers
Make sure the products you buy comply with federal safety laws.
It can be a nightmare trying to navigate the multitude of federal and state regulations regarding product safety.
We’re here to help you determine which regulations, if any, apply to the items you plan to purchase.
When it comes to promotional product marketing, there are three regulations which often come into play:
This law provides the Consumer Product Safety Commission with significant new regulatory and enforcement tools, specifically for products intended for children 12 and under.
Not only do items need to pass specific testing requirements, proper tagging with tracking labels is required on each product.
Nearly all lithium batteries are required to pass section 38.3 of the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria to ensure the safety of batteries during shipping. Additional testing and certifications may also be required.
Lithium batteries are found in power banks, mobile chargers, and various electronics which are common items used in the promotional product marketing world.
Also known as the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, California Proposition 65 is a law that imposes requirements for goods made, distributed or sold in the State of California.
Items which may be sold or delivered in California will need to adhere to the Prop 65 regulations.
Children’s Products and Safety
The CPSIA defines a children’s product as designed and intended primarily for a child age 12 years of age and younger.
Consider the following to determine if a product is primarily intended for children under 12:
• Does the manufacturer state or label the product as intended for children?
• Does the packaging, display or promotion of the product indicate it’s appropriate for use by children?
• Is the product commonly recognized by consumers as intended for children 12 or younger?
• Does it fall into the Age Determination Guidelines issued by the Commission?
Determining how your product is classified enables you to identify correctly the set of consumer product safety standards applicable to your product.
Children’s products are required to undergo third party testing and to have a written Children’s Product Certificate (CPC) demonstrating compliance.
In addition, a permanent tracking label is required to be present on the item.
Children’s Products and Testing
Be sure. Be safe. Select only certified products for your marketing.
Products primarily intended for children 12 and under require testing and certification.
What sort of certification is required for products being tested?
General Conformity Certificate (GCC): this is a supplier’s declaration of conformity based on either a test of each item
or a reasonable testing program and is required for CPSC regulated products.
Children’s Product Certification (CPC): these certificates should be produced for all children’s products and
reflect the results of third-party testing. Note that GCC and CPC are sometimes used interchangeably.
If a child may use a product intended for adults, should testing be performed?
If there is a potential use of a product by children 12 years of age and younger, children’s product testing should be performed.
One should consider the Final Interpretative Rule on the definition of a children’s product
and additional CPSC guidance to confirm if it would be classified as a children’s product.
What warning information must appear on an item that will be used for children ages infant to preteen?
With an item that is used for children ages infant to preteen, compliance to the most stringent requirements would apply.
So as an infant item, there must be no small parts and it must comply with applicable dimensional requirements,
along with use and abuse tests using the most stringent criteria (typically rated for the older child).
The item should include a small parts warning for all toys and games intended for children
between three and six years that have small parts (which an infant item could not have).
Additional warnings may be required based on the type of product being distributed. Please confer with a product safety lab.
Children’s Products Tracking Labels
Test reports are not enough, it’s got to be trackable.
All products intended for children under 12 are required to have a permanent tracking label adhered.
What must be included on a tracking label?
At a minimum, the tracking label must identify the factory and date of production,
as well as contact information to find out if the item was subject to a recall.
Can tracking labels be put on the packaging of an item or must we put them on the item?
The law requires that markings with the specified information be permanent and
placed on the item where practicable and on the packaging.
If the product is too small to include the tracking label code, it is acceptable to label only the packaging.
Does there need to be tracking information for the screen printing on a t-shirt?
Yes. In case there are problems with the ink, the supplier, distributor and consumer need to be able to contact the printing facility. We suggest including the tracking information at the lower corner of the design itself or at the bottom hem of the shirt.
Is it acceptable to apply the tracking information as a label or with a stamp?
Adhesive labels are not considered ‘permanent’ so would not be a suitable method.
Stamping would be acceptable, as long as the stamp was permanent and not able to be rubbed off or otherwise easily removed.
Where can I find more information?
You can find more guidance on the CPSC’s Tracking Label Requirements website.