The overall aim of the A-label is to draw attention to modelling and hobby materials that are not harmful to children and youngsters.
This makes it easy for the relevant people in schools, institutions, shops, etc. to choose without worrying whether the products comply with the legislation or contain substances that may be inappropriate to handle.
An A-label primarily signals that the contents of the product comply with the law, mainly the following points:
• A safety data sheet must be provided for the product in case of professional applications, in hazard-labelled products and products containing
• The product must be labelled according to applicable rules of classification and labelling (irritant, harmful etc.)
An A-labelled product goes one step further so that not only compliance, but also more stringent requirements must be respected. This provides greater safety for children and youngsters using the product. The following special requirements are among those set out for the product:
- All products must be accompanied by a material safety data sheet.
- No products have hazard labels.
- No products contain hazardous substances that must be mentioned in the safety data sheet.
- The amount is so small that it is negligible.
- Only a particular group of preservatives are allowed in the products.
- Butylparaben and propylparaben are not allowed.
- Carcinogens, mutagens and reproductive toxinsare only allowed in such small quantities that they are negligible.
- Allergens are only allowed in such small quantities that they are negligible.
- Endocrine disrupting substances (set by the EU) are not contained in the product.
- The product must comply with requirements for minimal release of heavy metals.
- The product may not contain any perfumes or fragrances.
The law generally provides that products used by children and youngsters may not contain harmful substances. However, there are no clear guidelines with regard to limits.
The FFFH and the A-label have taken care of this by establishing the above precise requirements.
If FFFH’s members want to obtain the A-label for their products, these must not contain hazardous substances in quantities that exceed the absolute minimum.
Be aware that hobby products appealing to children under 14 years of age are required to have the CE-label. The A-label and the CE-label are not the same.
Be aware that hobby products that have a play value for children under 14 years, have the CE mark. An A-rated and a CE mark are two different things.
To obtain a CE Mark, requires inter alia requirements for different types of documentation in the production process and requires the testing of mechanical - physical properties, flammability and selected chemical substances (EN71-1, 2.3). CE-marked products may naturally contain no harmful substances, but the requirements are not fixed just as sharp as the A-marking. An A-rated product requires the ingredients and the demands are so rigorous that more than lives up to the chemical part of the toy legislation.