EU: Product information file

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maaike

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Hello everybody,

I relatively new to soapmaking (and this forum) and want to start a small business to pay for my hobby. I am currently testing the recipes/fragrances/micas I want to use and am looking into how to actually sell my products. However, to sell cold process soaps legally in the EU, there are tons of guidelines and I'm getting a bit lost atm. I have several questions.

As far as I can see you need to note down every soap you make in your PIF and the ingredients that you have used for it. I order most of my ingredients online at youwish.nl and for most of those ingredients, a batch number is included. However, there are also some ingredients such as cocoa butter, lye, some fragrance oils, some mica colours, and sodium lactate where no batch numbers are given. I thought you had to note down all the batch numbers for your ingredients, but since they are not included what do you do then? For which kinds of ingredients do you need the batch numbers?

Another question I had was if you could also use ingredients from the supermarket since they are food safe, such as some oils and lye? At the website of youwish not for every single ingredient a MSDS/SDS is online, so does this mean that for only some ingredients you need to hand in those for you safety assessment?

I hope some of you might have some answers to help me along :)
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Selling to pay for a hobby is something that I have always considered to be a good way to start hating a hobby! Not to mention that a beginner should have a good amount of experience behind them before selling to the public (about a year is a good idea).

But in the EU it's even harder. The safety assessment costs money and many countries even have particular laws in addition to that. In Germany for example, you can't use your kitchen for food and for soaping, so you need a dedicated kitchen for it. In Austria, until recently, you had to have a degree in chemistry or similar, or many years experience working in the cosmetic industry to be able to run a cosmetic company. In England (no longer EU, I know!) things like scales and even how the soap can and can't look are subject to regulations.

It is not a way to pay for the hobby in the EU. And that's okay - like most other hobbies, if it's something that you do so often and pour too much money in to, there are different issues at play! Soaping has the benefit that we can make smaller batches to scratch the itch
 

maaike

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Selling to pay for a hobby is something that I have always considered to be a good way to start hating a hobby! Not to mention that a beginner should have a good amount of experience behind them before selling to the public (about a year is a good idea).

But in the EU it's even harder. The safety assessment costs money and many countries even have particular laws in addition to that. In Germany for example, you can't use your kitchen for food and for soaping, so you need a dedicated kitchen for it. In Austria, until recently, you had to have a degree in chemistry or similar, or many years experience working in the cosmetic industry to be able to run a cosmetic company. In England (no longer EU, I know!) things like scales and even how the soap can and can't look are subject to regulations.

It is not a way to pay for the hobby in the EU. And that's okay - like most other hobbies, if it's something that you do so often and pour too much money in to, there are different issues at play! Soaping has the benefit that we can make smaller batches to scratch the itch
Hi thanks for your reply!

I think I do need to mention that I have 1.5 years of experience (do not think it is much so still calling myself a newbie) and that the testing I mentioned is just to finalize the recipes I will submit for my safety assessment. I do try to make smaller batches but I just have too much soap left and want to even make it more often en scale up the batches. I am certain I want to get my safety assessment and start a small side business. I already have a small customer base (people who now received it for free because I had too much left) and a beauty salon I could sell it at. I have added some pictures if you want to see some of them :)

The Netherlands, where I am situated, only has additional laws regarding the time you have to present the product information file if asked. So luckily I do not have to adhere to laws such as those you mentioned in Austria and Germany. I luckily have the support of family members and friends who already set up their own small business in the general NL business laws. But still, the EU cosmetics laws are a minefield and while researching the laws for quite some time, the administrative side of the product information file is still a bit unclear for me. Hope you can help me a bit in the correct direction :)

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Valkya

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Hoi Maaike!

A facebook group I'm in is pretty good at helping with all things concerning the PIF and the EU regs in general:


Thet are linked to an assessment company, so you can't ask questions specific to other companies or suppliers.

Another group for EU cosmetics regs, not linked to a company and specifically aimed at understanding te regs:


Hope that helps! Veel geluk!
 

maaike

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Hoi Maaike!

A facebook group I'm in is pretty good at helping with all things concerning the PIF and the EU regs in general:


Thet are linked to an assessment company, so you can't ask questions specific to other companies or suppliers.

Another group for EU cosmetics regs, not linked to a company and specifically aimed at understanding te regs:


Hope that helps! Veel geluk!
Thank you very much! I will join them immediately! I think this should really help me along. Dankjewel :)
 
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