Category: Safety

Picture of the World Trade Organization (WTO) building

Is it safe to buy products online from the other side of the world?

Consumers now buy things from anywhere in the world in a few clicks. But consumer groups' research shows the safety of these products is not always guaranteed. Online shops are urged to act responsibly and authorities should work together across...

/ October 8, 2019

How EU-funded research can deliver to consumers

Between 2021 and 2027, the EU Horizon Europe programme is planning to spend around a whopping 100 billion euros on research projects. No surprise therefore that academics, industry representatives and others will flood Brussels this week to attend the huge...

/ September 24, 2019

Time’s up for harmful flame retardants in TV screens

Did you know that your furniture, clothes and electronic devices can contain harmful chemicals? The most common ones are halogenated flame retardants. The good news is that plastic in TV screens will be free of them thanks to new Ecodesign...

/ June 18, 2019
Stock picture showing a child's room. Consumer groups want all these products to fall under the same future EU market surveillance regime.

Improving safety checks for some, but not all, consumer products flies in the face of reason

When we purchase new toys, clothes or electronics, we expect these to be safe. This is where ‘market surveillance’ comes into play: our authorities making sure products conform to our laws through controls and inspections. And as we are in...

Winter is here, with its cold temperatures and biting winds. For many of us, this is the season to slather on moisturising lip balms: we apply them before we go out into the cold, after eating or drinking, or even after a kiss!

Bite your lip! Your balm may contain unsafe oils

Winter is here, with its cold temperatures and biting winds. Your skin may start to feel dry and itchy, and your lips may become chapped. For many of us, this is the season to slather on moisturising lip balms: we...

/ November 22, 2017

Fluorinated substances: the best packaging for your fast food?

The food that I serve my three children is likely to contain unwanted substances due to contaminated soil, air or water. It’s sad, but it’s a fact. What I struggle to understand is why problematic substances are intentionally added to...

/ March 14, 2017

Fuzzy maths or how the Commission solves ‘costly’ chemicals laws

The European Commission is running EU chemicals laws through its REFIT machine. REFIT sounds like a strenuous fitness regime for overweight risk managers, right!? It’s not. Instead, it is a Commission programme that looks to streamline EU laws – a...

/ October 18, 2016

Did TTIP push the EU to scrap precaution on endocrine disruptors?

Last month, the European Commission broke a promise it had made to you and all other EU citizens. The promise? That the EU will not trade away the ’precautionary principle’ to strike a trade deal with the United States (known...

/ July 14, 2016

For better or for worse? The Commission and its ‘better regulation’ agenda

One of the Juncker Commission’s favourite catchphrases is to deliver ‘better regulation for better results.’ At the same time, it claims it will serve citizens and restore confidence in the European Union project. Unfortunately, recent developments suggest it is struggling...

/ February 25, 2016

Ending the deadlock on endocrine disruptors

Lately there has been a lot of talk in EU circles about endocrine disruptors. Endo-what you might ask? Let me break it down for you: Imagine you urgently need to call somebody with an important message. But no matter how...

/ February 23, 2016