The deadline for when businesses must start applying the UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) marking has been extended to 1 January 2023 by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The new UKCA marking will replace the EU Conformité Européene (CE) marking currently used by businesses in the UK. It will allow the UK to have control over its goods regulations following Brexit, and is intended to set and maintain high industry product safety standards.

With the deadline originally set for 1 January 2022 (and in recognising the impact which Covid-19 has had on UK businesses), the Government has decided to give businesses an additional year to apply the new product safety markings, meaning that the CE mark must be replaced by the UKCA marking by no later than 1 January 2023.

The UKCA marking has been available for use since 1 January 2021, and some businesses have already using it to demonstrate their conformity with product standards in England, Scotland and Wales.

Which Goods Does This Affect?

The relevant product areas covered by the UKCA marking cover most (but not all) products which are currently covered by the CE marking, including:

  • Toy safety
  • Recreational craft and personal watercraft
  • Simple pressure vessels
  • Electromagnetic compatibility
  • Non-automatic weighing instruments
  • Measuring instruments
  • Lifts
  • ATEX
  • Radio equipment
  • Pressure equipment
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Gas appliances
  • Machinery
  • Equipment for use outdoors
  • Ecodesign
  • Aerosols
  • Low voltage electrical equipment
  • Restriction of hazardous substances

The following products are also covered by the UKCA marking, but special rules apply to these and it is therefore important to check the specific guidance for those in advance of using the UKCA marking:

  • medical devices
  • rail interoperability
  • construction products
  • civil explosives

Because the UKCA marking is the proposed UK equivalent to the CE marking, the rules for using it will broadly mirror the rules for the CE marking. The substantive requirements of UK law will still be the same as the EU essential requirements and UK conformity assessment bodies will continue to be authorised to assess goods for the UK market.

It is important to note that businesses who wish to place products on the EU market will still be required to attach CE marking to its products or packaging, and must satisfy the conformity assessment requirements for CE marking before doing so.

The extension will be given effect by the introduction of a new statutory instrument under section 8 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 later this year.

For legal advice regarding these product safety regulations and your obligations as a business, please contact Farleys’ commercial law team on 0845 287 0939 or complete our online contact form and a member of the team will get in touch with you.