Product safety: Online marketplaces check their websites for reported products

bol.com, eMAG, Wish.com, AliExpress, Amazon, eBay, Rakuten France, Allegro, Cdiscount, Etsy and Joom have signed the “Commitment for Better Product Safety” to remove dangerous products from their websites in cooperation with the EU member states.

Since 2003, the Safety Gate has enabled the rapid exchange of information between EU/EEA member states, the UK and the European Commission on dangerous non-food products that pose a risk to consumer health and safety. In this way, appropriate follow-up measures can be adopted and products can be excluded from the market.

According to the EU Commission, more online marketplaces are committing themselves to improving the safety of the products they sell compared to last year. On 1 March 2021, two new signatories have joined the initiative “Declaration for more product safety”, namely Joom and Etsy. Consequently, they undertake to check that products registered via Safety Gate are not offered for sale on their websites, and to act swiftly when national authorities notify them of dangerous products that should be removed.

The Product Safety Pledge sets out specific voluntary measures that can be taken by marketplaces to quickly remove offers of unsafe products from their platforms. So far, 11 online marketplaces have signed this agreement to remove dangerous products from their websites in cooperation with the EU member states, namely bol, eMAG, Wish.com, AliExpress, Amazon, eBay, Rakuten France, Allegro, Cdiscount, Etsy and Joom.

EU Commission improves Safety Gate

In addition to the online marketplaces, the EU Commission itself is also intensifying the topic of product safety. In accordance with the publication of the Annual Report on ”Safety Gate”, the Commission has launched its completely revamped public Safety Gate website with a modern and user-friendly interface to speed up and simplify the notification procedure. The pages are gradually being translated into all EU languages as well as Icelandic and Norwegian. Companies can also use the Business Gateway to quickly and efficiently notify national authorities of safety concerns regarding a product they have placed on the market.

Recommendation and advice for distributors of products in the EU

Distributors of products in the EU are advised to keep an eye on the weekly notifications from the EU Safety Gate. In the case of alerts for products that are very similar to the distributors’ own products, it is advisable to carry out a risk analysis to rule out the possibility of such products being affected. Caution should be exercised if, for example, the supplier or model is the same.

trade-e-bility monitors the reports and includes findings in your risk analysis and assessment. Boris Berndt will be pleased to answer any questions you may have: Please call +49/40/750687-275 or send an e-mail to beratung@trade-e-bility.de​​​​​​​.

Video: The European Authorised Representative (EU REP)

Non-food products are subject to numerous rules and regulations within the European Union (EU), with which compliance must be ensured by the manufacturer and/or importer. An authorised representative as contemplated by the Product Safety Act (ProdSG) – also known as EU-REP – established in the European Economic Area can assist manufacturers and importers in fulfilling certain obligations. This concerns, among other things, obligations from the ProdSG, but also the Market Surveillance Regulation (EU 2019/1020). In this case, the European Authorised Representative acts as a link between the manufacturer and the market surveillance authorities and keeps extensive information available. In the process, the authorised representative is required to perform specific tasks that will be discussed in this video.

The video is available for viewing here (YouTube)