Do you manufacture, supply or import hazardous substances? If so, you should be aware that the labels for such substances must be classified, labelled and packaged according to the CLP (Classification, Labelling and Packaging of chemicals) regulations.

Before placing any chemical mixture on the market you must establish the potential risks they pose to human health and the environment and classify them in line with the identified hazards. Your mixtures must then be labelled in accordance with CLP so that workers and consumers are aware of their adverse effects before they handle them.

GHS mixtures

A Global Solution

The Classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures regulations (CLP) came into force on 20 January 2009 in all European Union (EU) Member States, including the UK.

The EU CLP Regulation adopts the United Nations’ Globally Harmonised System of the classification and labelling of chemicals (GHS) across all EU countries.

GHS is a voluntary agreement, rather than a law, but must be adopted through a suitable national or regional legal mechanism to ensure it becomes legally binding. That’s what the EU CLP Regulation does.

The EU CLP Regulation, post Brexit, has been retained in GB law. This means that Great Britain continues to adopt GHS, independently of the European Union.


CLP compliance -Labelling

The aim of the GHS regulation is to standardise the many different classifications and labelling standards used in different countries. This makes it safer to use and trade hazardous chemicals, not just within the EU, but worldwide, through the United Nations’ Globally Harmonised System – GHS. The aim is clear: one substance, one label – worldwide!

Many chemical substances and mixtures such as detergents, cements, paints, glues, dishwasher tablets, fertilizers, essential oils etc, as well as industrial mixtures, may have hazardous properties which can become a danger if they are not handled properly and suitable labelling and documentation is a key requirement in being compliant.

CLP introduced pictograms, signal words and Hazard and Precautionary statements to labels to inform users of their hazards.

Elements that are required on a CLP label:clp compliance clp labelling

CLP Compliance – Packaging

CLP Regulations require that the packaging used for a chemical must:

  • Prevent the chemical from escaping.
  • Not be adversely affected by the chemical.
  • Be strong enough to withstand normal handling.

If the package has a replaceable closure this must continue to prevent the chemical from escaping even after repeated use and some chemicals that are sold to the general public must be fitted with child-resistant fastenings and have a tactile danger warning (usually a small raised triangle) to alert the blind and the partially sighted that they are handling a dangerous chemical.

Safety Data Sheets

According to GHS, the Safety Data Sheet plays a prominent role in hazard communication so if you manufacture or supply chemical mixtures which contain hazardous substances, for professional or industrial use, then you must provide a Safety Data Sheet with your products to make all staff aware of how they must be handled, stored and disposed of.

SDSs must follow a 16 chapter format with the hazard information, including the labelling information, shown in section 2 (Hazard Identification).

SDSs are governed by the REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals) Regulation, not CLP.

How Can Hibiscus Help?

If you are unsure about your obligations, or need assistance with achieving CLP compliance, Hibiscus Plc can help; we’ve been printing labels and providing solutions for the chemical and hazardous goods industries for over 40 years.

We produce software for the classification and labelling of mixtures as well as Safety Datasheet creation and management.

We also print standard and bespoke CLP labels for substances and mixtures and can even supply tactile warning labels, handling and shipping labels, and labels for transportation.

Contact us now, to see how we can improve your GHS label compliance.

Visit our website for a range of GHS labels: Stock-Xpress 

Call us on: 0113 242 4272.