Toy Safety

Toy safety is regulated by Directive 2009/48/EU on the safety of toys and on their free movement in the EU.
It applies to products designed or intended for use in play by children under 14 years of age. The aim is that the toys manufactured in, or imported into the EU do not put children at risk.
The directive aims to ensure that toys meet safety requirements that are very strict especially about the use of chemicals in toys.

News
A new initiative expands the list of fragrances prohibited in toys to prevent potential allergic reactions in children.

Revision of the Toy Safety Directive

Legal act: 
Directive 2009/48/EU
Commission Directive (EU) 2020/2088 (date of effect: 04 January 2021)
Commission Directive (EU) 2020/2089 (date of effect: 04 January 2021)

Consolidated act:
21/05/2021 of Directive 2009/48/EU

Scope

  1. This Directive shall apply to products designed or intended, whether or not exclusively, for use in play by children under 14 years of age (hereinafter referred to as toys). The products listed in Annex I shall not be considered as toys within the meaning of this Directive.
  1. This Directive shall not apply to the following toys:
  • playground equipment intended for public use;
  • automatic playing machines, whether coin operated or not, intended for public use;
  • toy vehicles equipped with combustion engines;
  • toy steam engines; and
  • slings and catapults.

 

Definitions

Making available on the market means any supply of a toy for distribution, consumption or use on the Community market in the course of a commercial activity, whether in return for payment or free of charge.

Placing on the market means the first making available of a toy on the Community market.

Importer means any natural or legal person established within the Community who places a toy from a third country on the Community market.

Distributor means any natural or legal person in the supply chain, other than the manufacturer or the importer, who makes a toy available on the market.

Withdrawal means any measure aimed at preventing a toy in the supply chain from being made available on the market.

Market surveillance means the activities carried out and measures taken by public authorities to ensure that toys comply with the applicable requirements set out in Community harmonisation legislation and do not endanger health, safety or any other aspect of public interest protection.

 

ANNEX I - List of products that, in particular, are not considered as toys within the meaning of this Directive (as referred to in Article 2(1))

  1. Decorative objects for festivities and celebrations
  2. Products for collectors, provided that the product or its packaging bears a visible and legible indication that it is intended for collectors of 14 years of age and above. Examples of this category are:
  • detailed and faithful scale models;
  • kits for the assembly of detailed scale models;
  • folk dolls and decorative dolls and other similar articles;
  • historical replicas of toys; and
  • reproductions of real fire arms.
  1. Sports equipment, including roller skates, inline skates, and skateboards intended for children with a body mass of more than 20 kg
  2. Bicycles with a maximum saddle height of more than 435 mm, measured as the vertical distance from the ground to the top of the seat surface, with the seat in a horizontal position and with the seat pillar set to the minimum insertion mark
  3. Scooters and other means of transport designed for sport or which are intended to be used for travel on public roads or public pathways
  4. Electrically driven vehicles which are intended to be used for travel on public roads, public pathways, or the pavement thereof
  5. Aquatic equipment intended to be used in deep water, and swimming learning devices for children, such as swim seats and swimming aids
  6. Puzzles with more than 500 pieces
  7. Guns and pistols using compressed gas, with the exception of water guns and water pistols, and bows for archery over 120 cm long
  8. Fireworks, including percussion caps which are not specifically designed for toys
  9. Products and games using sharp-pointed missiles, such as sets of darts with metallic points
  10. Functional educational products, such as electric ovens, irons or other functional products operated at a nominal voltage exceeding 24 volts which are sold exclusively for teaching purposes under adult supervision
  11. Products intended for use for educational purposes in schools and other pedagogical contexts under the surveillance of an adult instructor, such as science equipment
  12. Electronic equipment, such as personal computers and game consoles, used to access interactive software and their associated peripherals, unless the electronic equipment or the associated peripherals are specifically designed for and targeted at children and have a play value on their own, such as specially designed personal computers, key boards, joy sticks or steering wheels
  13. Interactive software, intended for leisure and entertainment, such as computer games, and their storage media, such as CDs
  14. Babies’ soothers
  15. Child-appealing luminaires
  16. Electrical transformers for toys
  17. Fashion accessories for children which are not for use in play

 

Article 15 - EC declaration of conformity

  1. The EC declaration of conformity shall state that the fulfilment of the requirements set out in Article 10 and Annex II has been demonstrated.
  2. The EC declaration of conformity shall as a minimum contain the elements specified in Annex III to this Directive and the relevant modules set out in Annex II to Decision No 768/2008/EC and shall be continuously updated. It shall have the model structure set out in Annex III to this Directive. It shall be translated into the language or languages required by the Member State in whose market the toy is placed or made available.
  3. By drawing up the EC declaration of conformity, the manufacturer shall assume responsibility for the compliance of the toy.

 

Article 16 - General principles of the CE marking

  1. Toys made available on the market shall bear the CE marking.
  2. The CE marking shall be subject to the general principles set out in Article 30 of Regulation (EC) No 765/2008.
  3. Member States shall presume that toys bearing the CE marking comply with this Directive.
  4. Toys not bearing a CE marking or which do not otherwise comply with this Directive may be shown and used at trade fairs and exhibitions, provided that they are accompanied by a sign which clearly indicates that they do not comply with this Directive and that they will not be made available in the Community before being brought into conformity.

 

Article 17 - Rules and conditions for affixing the CE marking

  1. The CE marking shall be affixed visibly, legibly and indelibly to the toy, to an affixed label or to the packaging. In the case of small toys and toys consisting of small parts, the CE marking may alternatively be affixed to a label or an accompanying leaflet. Where, in the case of toys sold in counter displays, that is not technically possible, and on condition that the counter display was originally used as packaging for the toy, the CE marking may be affixed to the counter display. Where the CE marking is not visible from outside the packaging, if any, it shall as a minimum be affixed to the packaging.
  2. The CE marking shall be affixed before the toy is placed on the market. It may be followed by a pictogram or any other mark indicating a special risk or use.

 

Article 53 - Transitional periods

  1. Member States shall not impede the making available on the market of toys which are in accordance with Directive 88/378/EEC and which were placed on the market before 20 July 2011.
  2. In addition to the requirement of paragraph 1, Member States shall not impede the making available on the market of toys which are in accordance with the requirements of this Directive, except those set out in Part III of Annex II, provided that such toys meet the requirements set out in Part 3 of Annex II to Directive 88/378/EEC and were placed on the market before 20 July 2013.

Guidance documents: 
Guidance document No 1 Scooters - 5 October 2016
Guidance document No 2 Floating seats - 26 April 2001
Guidance document No 4 Toys covered by TSD - 15 October 2015
Guidance document No 5 Criteria to classify products consisting of miniatures to be assembled and painted and their support products - 13 February 2003
Guidance document No 6 Criteria for differentiating dolls for adult collectors from toys - 13 February 2003
Guidance document No 7 Toys used in and on the water - 15 January 2014
Guidance document No 8 Pools - 28 January 2019
Guidance document No 9 Books - 10 December 2013
Guidance document No 10 Musical instrumentsnts - 26 February 2019
Guidance document No 11 Toys intended for children under 3 yesrs of age - 6 April 2009
Guidance document No 12 Packaging - 09 July 2012
Guidance document No 13 Crafts - 19 April 2011
Guidance document No 14 Sports Equipment - 26 September 2011
Guidance document No 15 Writing instrument and stationery - 09 October 2012
Guidance document No 16 Electronic Equipment - 9 July 2012
Guidance document No 17 Disguise Costumes - 4 December 2012
Guidance document No 18 Puffer balls and similar toys - 16 September 2019
Guidance document No 19 Soother holders - 26 September 2019
Guidance document No 20 Decorative products and products for collectors - 30 April 2021

Commission Summary of Member States' Reports on the Application of the Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC - 1 October 2021

Annex - Commission Summary of Member States' Reports on the Application of the Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC - 1 October 2021

Annex 1 - Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC - An explanatory guidance document - Rev 1.9 - 10/02/2016 - 1 October 2021

Annex 2 - Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC - An explanatory guidance document - Rev 1.9 - 10/02/2016 - 1 October 2021

Commission Summary of Member States' Reports on the Application of the Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC - 15 July 2021 - 15 July 2021

Annexes to the Commission Summary of Member States' Reports on the Application of the Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC - 15 July 2021

Commission staff working document - executive summary of the evaluation of Directive 2009/48/EC on the safety of toys - 19 November 2020

Commission staff working document - evaluation of Directive 2009/48/EC on the safety of toys - 19 November 2020

Commission Directive amending Appendix C to Annex II to Directive 2009/48/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council for the purpose of adopting specific limit values for chemicals used in certain toys, as regards formaldehyde - 2018

Commission Directive amending, for the purposes of adaptation to technical and scientific developments, point 13 of part III of Annex II to Directive 2009/48/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on the safety of toys, as regards aluminium - 2018

Safety of Toys: technical guidelines on the application of Directive 2009/48/EC - Article published on 13 April 2017

Evaluation of Directive 2009/48/EC on the Safety of Toys - December 2015

Voluntary agreement between the European Commission and Eurocommerce, the European Retail Round Table, Toy Traders of Europe and the European Promotional Products Association - 18 December 2008

Voluntary agreement between the European Commission and the Toy Industries of Europe (TIE) - 28 May 2008