The CLP Regulation (EG) No. 1272 /2008 for the classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures (CLP) was implemented on 20 January 2009. This regulation converts the sample regulation GHS ("Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals") developed by the UNCED (United Nations Conference on Environment and Development) into European law.
After 1 June 2015, all chemical substances and mixtures (formerly "Preparations") have to be labelled according to the requirements of this CLP Regulation. If products have been classified, labelled and packed according to the Dangerous Substances Directive 67/548/EWG or Dangerous Preparation Directive 1999/45/EG and are still in stock, they have to be sold within a period of two years: substances until 1 December 2012 and mixtures until 1 June 2017.
In addition to the CLP Regulation, the Dangerous Substance Directive 67/548/EWG and the Dangerours Preparation Directive 1999/45/EG still exist, but they will both be deleted on 1 June 2015.
In contrast to the old labelling, where every symbol had a code letter (for example Xn - harmful), the new pictograms do not have a similar description. However, in addition to the pictograms, there is a signal word. This depends on the severity of the danger and warns about possible danger immediately:
The signal words are:
The signal word "danger" labels severe danger categories. The signal word "warning" is used for categories with less severe hazards.
If one label has more than one pictogam, the signal word for the more severe danger category will be shown.
The h phrases, also called Hazard Statements, are standardised sentences which describe the severity of danger coming from a substance or a mixture. This function is similar to the former r phrases. The letter H stands for Hazard Statement.
For example: H301 Toxic if swallowed.
Hazard statements have the following coding system:
P phrases, also called Precautionary Statements, are standardised sentences which indicate the protective measures to be used when dealing with chemical substances and mixtures. The function ist similar to the former s phrases. The letter P stands for Precautionary Statements.
For example: P380 Evacuate area.
Precautionary statements have the following coding system:
Every h phrase has a few specific p phrases. In order that the labels do not get too full, every manufacturer is only allowed to use six p phrases on each label. For this reason, combined sentences have been developed.
For example: P411 + P235 Store at temperatures not exceeding ... °C. Keep cool.
The European Union has decided on additional h phrases so that the former level of protection using the old regulations can still be kept. These h phrases are stated with EUH and a three-digit code. The number is the same as the former r phrase. "EUH014" is, for example, the former r phrase 14.
For example: EUH014 Reacts violently with water.