General requirements for products in Finland

General consumer goods

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General consumer goods must not pose a danger to the health or property of anyone. General safety requirements for consumer products and services are laid down in the Consumer Safety Act.  It is a general act that is not applied when other legislation contains provisions on the safety of specific consumer products or services.

General consumer goods include

  • furniture,
  • childcare articles,
  • candles,
  • textiles,
  • decorative items,
  • sports and exercise equipment, and
  • furnishing items.

If a product is otherwise categorised under general consumer goods, but it contains, for example, electrical or pressure features, both the Consumer Safety Act and special legislation can be applied.

The Consumer Safety Act only applies to products that are intended for the use of consumers or for private consumption. The Act does not apply to products intended for professional use.

Further provisions on providing information for consumers are laid down in the Government Decree on Consumer Goods and Consumer Services.

Chemicals legislation

A significant part of the Finnish chemicals legislation is based on EU regulation. This national legislation complements and implements EU-level regulation. Statutes on chemicals include

  • Chemicals Act,
  • Decree on the Retail Sale of Hazardous Chemicals,
  • Act on Plant Protection Products,
  • Act on the Safe Handling and Storage of Dangerous Chemicals and Explosives (Chemicals Safety Act), and Act on Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment.

Standards and certification

Standards also play an important role in product design and manufacturing, product testing, safety assurance and conformity assessment.

Finland has a decentralized standardization system, in which the Standards Association SFS acts as a central organisation and develops standards together with its industry associations.

Compliance with the standards can be demonstrated by certification. In Finland, Finas accredits certification organisations.