What is a UFI code and how does it affect the labelling of hazardous chemicals?
The unique formula identifier, known by its acronym UFI code, is a 16-character number that is required on the label of your products that contain a hazardous mixture.
In addition to the UFI, you are also required to provide other information on your mixture and associated products for poison centres to use - in other words, it is necessary to carry out a PCN notification in all countries where the product will be sold.
For example, if a Slovenian importer imports a hazardous mixture and plans to sell it in multiple EU countries (France, Germany), the importer must submit their product information to all the appointed bodies (poison centres) of the relevant EU countries (Germany, France, and Slovenia) before placing the mixtures on the market.
Check the explanation of the UFI code in the interesting ECHA video HERE.
What is Poison Centres Notification (PCN)?
Poison Centre Notification (PCN) is the procedure of notification a hazardous mixture information in the European database of Poison Centres. The UFI code alone has no value – is empty and therefore, PCN must be performed for every UFI code.
Which data are required for Poison Centres Notifications (PCN)?
A brief overview of the necessary data for the successful implementation of PCN notification and obtaining a UFI code is given below. But you can find a more detailed description in our BLOG article.
CONTACT DETAILS - name, full address, telephone number and email address
TRADE NAME or NAMES of the mixture
PACKAGING TYPE and SIZE - the packaging used to place the mixture on the market. The container type may be a ‘bottle’, a ‘box’ or an ‘aerosol can’, for example.
PRODUCT CATEGORY - the category according to the European product categorisation system (EuPCS) - category must match the main intended use.
UNIQUE FORMULA IDENTIFIER (UFI CODE)
HAZARD INFORMATION - label elements (pictograms, signal word, hazard statements, supplemental hazard information, precautionary statements.)
TOXICOLOGICAL INFORMATION - likely ways in which a person might be exposed
PHYSICO-CHEMICAL PROPERTIES - physical state, colour, pH
FULL MIXTURE COMPOSITION
How does the UFI code works?
The UFI code and the other information you provided, will primarily be used by poison centres in the event of an emergency call. UFI works to link a specific product on the market to the submitted mixture information. Therefore, it helps to rapidly identify the exact product involved in an incident.
How do I generate UFI code?
Generating UFI code is probably the simplest step of the various obligations that companies need to comply with. The UFI code is generated using a UFI generator - available HERE.
The UFI generator is a web-based application that can be used online. Its use is free of charge and available in all official languages of the European Union. Be aware that the system does not save the created UFIs automatically; this must be done by the user.
The UFI can be created without a tax number, but this option should only be chosen if the company does not have a tax number for real. It is necessary to validate the created UFI in a further step.
More information on UFI code and PCN notifications is available on our BLOG.
UFI code - PCN expert services
Our UFI & Poison Centre Submission Service includes:
Advising on UFI code / PCN requirements and how they impact your products
Creation a UFI strategy
Data gap analysis and compilation of required info
ECHA account management
Application, validation and PCN submission
Obtaining a notification confirmation (PCN number)
Consulting how to include UFIs on product labels
Keep PCN dossiers up to date