UKCA replaces CE mark
Many stone products are required to be CE marked. It is part of Building Regulations and is the law, even though it is sometimes ignored when it comes to stone. Once the Brexit transition period is over, the European CE mark will be replaced by the UKCA mark in Great Britain (Northern Ireland will still use CE marks or its own UK[NI] marking).
Among the stone products that should carry CE (Conformitè Europëenne) marking are cladding, flooring, paving and tiles. There is no standard for worktops so they have not required CE marking and will not require UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) marking. Neither does bespoke stonework for conservation.
The UKCA marking will be used from 1 January 2021. Products carrying the mark must have been assessed and tested in GB by approved bodies, and the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) will continue to be the UK’s national accreditation organisation determining who is an approved body.
To allow businesses time to adjust to the new requirements and to sell existing CE-marked stock, CE marking will continue to be acceptable until 1 January 2022 in most cases. However, if the EU changes any of its standards you cannot sell products tested to those standards in Great Britain. They will have to comply with the UKCA standard.
Companies who bring products in to GB from the EU will, in most cases, now be classified as ‘importers’. This change of status brings new obligations such as:
- a requirement to label products with their name and address
- ensuring that the assessment and verification of constancy of performance (AVCP) requirements have been carried out by the manufacturer
- making sure the product bears the UKCA conformity marking
- ensuring the manufacturer has complied with their labelling obligations.
The government suggests anyone importing should consider taking professional advice to make sure they understand their status and obligations under the new GB regulatory framework, whatever it might turn out to be when negotiations with Europe are finally concluded.
How to use the UKCA marking
In most cases, you must apply the UKCA marking to the product itself or to the packaging. In some cases, it may be placed on the manuals or on other supporting literature. This will vary depending on the specific regulations that apply to the product.
UKCA markings must be placed on a product by the manufacturer or an authorised representative (where allowed for in the relevant legislation).
When attaching UKCA marking, you take full responsibility for the product’s conformity with the requirements of the relevant legislation.
You must only use the UKCA marking to show product conformity with the relevant UK legislation.
You must not place any marking or sign that may misconstrue the meaning or form of the UKCA marking to third parties.
You must not attach other markings on the product that affect the visibility, legibility or meaning of the UKCA marking.
UKCA marking cannot be placed on products unless there is a standard to which the product can comply and has been proven to do so in accordance with the requirements of the standard.
The UKCA marking must be at least 5mm in height unless a different minimum dimension is specified in the relevant legislation.
The UKCA marking must be easily visible, legible and from 1 January 2023 permanently attached.
For government guidance on using the UKCA mark click here.
To read what the Construction Leadership Council has to say about it click here.
For more details from the government about Construction Products Regulations from 1 January 2021, click here.