A treated article means any substance, mixture or article
- which has been treated with one or more biocidal products, or
- which intentionally contains one or more biocidal products.
For example, a sheet of plywood may be treated with a biocidal product that contains an anti-mould agent.
The Biocidal Products Regulation also applies to the use of biocides in treated articles to be placed on the market, not just biocidal products.
The requirements on treated articles set by the Biocidal Products Regulation refer to three things:
- allowed/prohibited active substances for biocides
- labelling of treated articles
- the obligation to provide information to consumers.
Allowed active substances in treated articles
According to the Biocidal Products Regulation, articles can only be treated with biocidal products with active substances that have been approved for use in the EU or whose assessment for approval is ongoing. The requirement applies to all treated articles, regardless of the country of manufacture. The active substance must be intended for use for the product type and purpose in question, such as a preservative for construction materials.
Labelling of treated articles
A company placing treated articles on the market is responsible for ensuring that the treated articles have been labelled as required by the regulation, when:
- the article’s sales package or marketing makes a claim regarding its biocidal properties
- A decree on approving the active substance provides for the labelling, because it has been considered necessary in the risk assessment of the active substance in question due to potential human and environmental exposure.
A more detailed description on the labelling requirements can be found in Article 58(3) of the Biocidal Products Regulation. The labelling must be easily understandable and clearly visible to the consumers.
Obligation to provide information
Consumers have the right to request information about biocidal treatments. The information about the biocidal treatment of a treated article must be provided to the consumer that requested the information free of charge within 45 days.
Sometimes it is difficult to draw the line between a biocidal product and a treated article, as is assessing whether an article is considered a treated article referred to in the Biocidal Products Regulation. The issue has been discussed in a guide with examples. In some cases, a decision in accordance with Article 3(3) has been made, in which case the Commission has investigated the issue upon the request of a Member State.