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Technical guidance on labelling requirement in the Furniture and Furnishing (Fire) (Safety) Regulation

october 2018- Relevant for: hardlines, softlines

In the UK, the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 19881 (as amended in 1989, 1993 and 2010) sets levels of fire resistance for domestic upholstered furniture and stipulates particular labelling requirements.

 The Regulation applies to all new domestic upholstered furniture that is supplied into the UK market. All those products must have both the display label and the permanent label. It is the retailer’s responsibility to ensure that the furniture on display must carry the correct label.

Display label:
Display label is usually in the form of a hang tag and must be on each individual item of the furniture clearly visible to anyone inspecting the furniture and to enable him to read both the front and the back of the label with as little inconvenience as is reasonably practicable.

Display label requirement applies to all new domestic upholstered furniture, except for mattresses, bed-bases, pillows, scatter cushion and seat pads, loose cover and stretch covers.

Furniture sold as a collection of pieces (such as three-piece suites) and in the case of covers which are so sold the label shall be attached to each individual piece.

Where the furniture meets the filling requirement and is both cigarette and match resistant, the following display label shall be attached:

 

technical guidance 1

Where the cover fabric is not match resistant, but the furniture has an interline that passes a Schedule 3 test. The furniture meets the filling requirement and is cigarette resistant, the following display label shall be attached:

 

technical guidance 2

 

Permanent label:
Permanent label requirement applies to all new domestic upholstered furniture, except for mattresses, bed-bases.

It may be incorporated into other labels, e.g. care labels, and may appear anywhere on the cover and, in the  case of other articles, shall appear on an external surface of the article but in every case the labels shall not appear so as to obscure any label or mark required to appear on the article by or under any enactment.

Furniture sold as a collection of pieces (such as three-piece suites) and in the case of covers which are so sold the label shall be attached to each individual piece.

The label must have a font size of at least 10 pt. (approx. 2.5 mm high) in upper or lower case. The letter must be legible, in durable print, and appear on a label of sufficient colours contrast to enable them to be seen clearly.

There are two versions of permanent label:
1. A full label, that gives full information about the furniture
2. A shorter label, that gives only the min. information about the furniture.

The shorter label is sometimes preferred by the retailer, as it will not reveal the information of the manufacturer. When a shorter label is used, the retailer must retain records of the information where a full label will contain.

A full label needs to contain:

  • the words CARELESSNESS CAUSES FIRE
  • the name and postcode of the first supplier of the furniture in the UK (importer or UK manufacturer)
  • the batch or identification number
  • date of importation (or manufacture)
  • description of filling materials
  • description of covering materials
  • whether or not the item contains an interliner that meets Schedule 3.

A shorter label needs to contain:

  • the words CARELESSNESS CAUSES FIRE
  • the batch number or identification number
  • whether or not the item contains a Schedule 3 interliner
  • a summary of the measures taken to ensure compliance with the regulations. This includes details of which materials have been tested to the specific schedules in the regulations.

Certain articles do not require all the above information, a summary is made in the below table:

 Article type

 Full label

 Shorter label

 Loose cover and stretch cover over furniture

 a), b) and f)

 a) and d)

 Pillow, scatter cusions and seat pads

 a), b) and e)

 a) and d)

 Cots, carry-cots, playpens, prams, push-chairs and other similar articles designed to contain a baby or small child

 a), b), e) and f)

 a) and d)

 

[1] Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations

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