Imports of plastic kitchenware from China and Hong Kong will have to abide by new safety regulations as of July 1 this year.
The EU has ruled that from this date the products must be accompanied by a declaration and analytical results from a laboratory to confirm that they comply with limits on the release of harmful chemicals.
The new rules apply to certain polyamide and melamine plastic kitchenware items. Polyamide items must demonstrate that they do not release primary aromatic amines in a detectable quantity into food, while melamine kitchenware will have to show that it does not leach more than the acceptable quantity of formaldehyde.
Documentary checks will be carried out on 100% of consignments, while other checks will be done at random on 10% of consignments.
The new regulations come in response to increasing concerns over the safety of Chinese-made plastic kitchenware. EU member states have complained about shortcomings in China’s control over the levels of primary aromatic amines and formaldehyde – both of which are harmful to health – in kitchen products for export.