Small Batch Manufacturers and Third Party Testing

September 27, 2013

Does a qualifying Small Batch Manufacturer still have to comply with the children’s product safety rules in Group B?

Yes. While qualifying Small Batch Manufacturers are not required to conduct third party testing for the children’s product safety rules listed in Group B, their products still must comply with those children’s product safety rules. It is important to remember that registration as a qualifying Small Batch Manufacturer does not relieve a company from complying with the requirements of the applicable standards. All children’s products always must comply with the applicable children’s product safety standards.

 

If I register as a Small Batch Manufacturer, does that mean I do not have to conduct third party testing for any children’s product I manufacture?

 

No. Registration as a Small Batch Manufacturer means only that you are not required to third party test for specific covered products. Registration is only effective for those products where no more than 7,500 units of the same product were manufactured in the previous calendar year. Thus, you can register as a Small Batch Manufacturer for one product where you manufactured no more than 7500 units, but still be required to conduct third party testing for other products where you manufactured more than 7500 units. However, the $1 million dollar income limitation applies to the sale of ALL your consumer products, not just covered products.

 

Does a qualifying small batch manufacturer have to issue a certificate of conformity?

 

Yes. A small batch manufacturer must always certify its children's products as compliant with the underlying children's product safety rules applicable to each product.

 

For those rules in Group A, the small batch manufacturer must base its Children's Product Certificate on third party testing performed by a CPSC-accepted lab, including third party testing or a certificate of conformity provided by a component part supplier, as described in 16 CFR part 1109.

 

For those rules in Group B, a qualifying small batch manufacturer does not have to issue a Children's Product Certificate based on third party testing but still needs to issue a general certificate of conformity based on first party testing, a reasonable testing program or a certificate of conformity provided by a component part supplier.

 

Can an importer be a qualifying small batch manufacturer?

 

Yes, but only if both the importer and the manufacturer of the covered product meet the revenue and unit criteria for small batch manufacturers. For example, an importer that has no more than $1 million in gross revenues qualifies as a small batch manufacturer if it is importing goods from a foreign manufacturer that produces fewer than 7,500 units of a covered product and also has gross revenue less than $1 million. On the other hand, an importer that imports goods from a foreign manufacturer that mass produces goods cannot be considered a small batch manufacturer for that product, even if that importer has less than $1 million in gross revenues and is importing fewer than 7,500 units of a product from that foreign manufacturer.

 

How does a qualifying Small Batch Manufacturer document its participation in the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry in its Children’s Product Certificate?

 

A qualifying Small Batch Manufacturer registered with the CPSC would list the Small Batch Manufacturer registration number provided by the CPSC on the Children’s Product Certificate as proof that it was not required to conduct third party testing for any applicable children’s product safety rules in Group B.

 

Once a qualifying Small Batch Manufacturer registers in the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry, how long is the registration valid?

 

Small Batch Manufacturer registration is done on a calendar year basis. Registration is valid for the calendar year in which a Small Batch Manufacturer registers with the CPSC. For example, if a manufacturer registers for calendar year 2014, then the registration is valid for calendar year 2014. If a manufacturer registers later in calendar year 2014, for instance in May, the registration is valid only for the remainder of calendar year 2014. The manufacturer must register again for calendar year 2015.

Can the Commission require qualifying Small Batch Manufacturers to third party test for certain regulations in the future?

 

Yes. If the Commission determines, based upon notice and a hearing, that full compliance with a third party testing requirement is reasonably necessary to protect public health and safety, the Commission will not provide to Small Batch Manufacturers an alternative testing requirement or exemption to that testing requirement. In addition, in the event of such a determination, the Commission will discontinue any exemption or alternative already in effect.

 

What is the Database? How is it different from the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry?

 

The database is the Publicly Available Consumer Product Safety Information Database website of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, found at www.saferproducts.gov. Through SaferProducts.gov, consumers, child service providers, health care professionals, government officials, and public safety entities can submit a report of harm (Report) involving consumer products. Manufacturers (including importers) and private labelers identified in a Report will receive a copy of the Report and have the opportunity to comment on it. Reports and manufacturer comments are published online for anyone to search and review at www.SaferProducts.gov. Although companies register for the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry by entering the Business Portal of SaferProducts.gov, the Registry is distinct from the Database. While the Database is a searchable online repository of reports of harm or risks of harm involving consumer products, the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry is the vehicle through which qualifying companies register with the Commission to avail themselves of alternative testing requirements or exemptions from third party testing for the children’s product safety rules listed in Group B.

 

If I register for the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry, am I also registering automatically to receive Reports about my product submitted to the publicly accessible Database at SaferProducts.gov?

 

Yes, registration in the Small Batch Manufacturers Registry enables a company to be notified electronically regarding a Report of harm involving its products submitted to the CPSC through the publicly available Database. Registration also allows a company to file claims about the alleged material inaccuracy or confidentiality of material contained in a Report and to make comments in response to a Report.