Last Updated on August 1, 2022 by Ithos Global Regulatory Team
It’s been more than two years since Great Britain officially withdrew from the European Union, but the biggest impact on cosmetic compliance is still to come. New regulations and changes affecting packaging, labeling, ingredient safety and recycling are set to go into effect over the coming months.
Ithos recently hosted a webinar with Bridget Salter, VP, Regulatory Affairs, and Bryan Kawanami, Director of Global Regulatory Affairs walking through six key compliance issues, answering questions and providing guidance on what companies should be doing now to prepare for the changes ahead:
- UK Plastic Packaging Tax (PPT): Designed to incentivize use of more recycled plastic in plastic packaging, the measure goes into effect April 1, 2022. Companies should register online with the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and assess their packaging supply chains and production process to determine the impact of the PPT as well as begin to document this data and documentation
- New Scientific Advisory Group on Chemical Safety of Non-Food and Non-Medicinal Consumer Products (SAG-CS): Formed in 2021 to provide scientific advice and risk assessment in the areas of public health and consumer safety, SAG-CS advises the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS), offering opinions on proposed regulatory changes relating to a chemical substance.
While cosmetic brands need take no formal action, they should monitor the group’s activity and opinions. The important thing to note here is that UK positions on the safety of ingredients and cosmetic products will start to differ from that of the EU and that will need to be considered for compliant entry into the market.
- UK REACH Regulation: Similar to EU REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and restriction of Chemicals), UK REACH was adopted January 1, 2021 and now operates independently. Placing the burden of proof on companies to demonstrate safe use of substances that go to market or are used in production, it covers manufacturing, importing, distributing or using chemicals as raw materials or finished products and applies to all companies, regardless of size.
- United Kingdom Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR): Currently proposed to be phased in from 2023, the new rules would place full onus on packaging manufacturers, brands and retailers to cover the cost of disposing waste they produce. EPR reporting begins in 2023, based on 2022 data, with additional requirements expected.
- Green Claims Code: Created by UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and informed by research and public opinion, the Green Claims Code consists of six guiding principles for businesses making any environmental claims:
- Truthful and accurate
- Clear and unambiguous
- Not omit or hide important information
- Comparisons should be fair and meaningful
- The full life cycle should be considered
- Claims should be substantiated
Reviews of misleading claims begin this year and breaches of the new code can be grounds for court proceedings and criminal liability, including for directors and other officers of corporate bodies.
- UK Aerosol Labeling: Beginning January 1, 2023 any new products destined for the UK will require the new UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) mark on all aerosol labels. The new mark replaces the epsilon “3” mark and “CE” mark, which are currently required. Note that Northern Ireland has adopted its own labeling regulations.
If you are currently using the IIN, you’ll be able to re-register products, if needed, generate PIFs and meet any new reporting requirements as soon as they are officially announced. The IIN will provide all updates, as they happen and by preparing product data now, brands can avoid any delays when new rules go into effect.
Disclaimer: We are not attorneys and nothing in this article should be considered legal counsel. The information provided is based on Ithos research, opinions and findings.