Planning to import and sell clothing or other textile products in Hong Kong? In this guide, we explain what Hong Kong companies must know about the Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance, labeling requirements, product standards, and much more.
- Children’s nightwear
- Children’s clothing
Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance
The Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance is a general ordinance in Hong Kong regulating the safety of consumer products. The Ordinance requires manufacturers, importers, and retailers of consumer products to ensure the safety of the products being placed in the market in Hong Kong.
General Safety Requirements
As said, the Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance aims at ensuring the safety of consumer products and sets labeling requirements. It also provides a list of accredited lab testing companies for consumer goods, including textile and apparel products. We further elaborate on these points in the following sections of this article.
The Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance sets up general safety principles for manufacturers, importers, and retailers for guidance, but doesn’t list any specific standards for apparel.
Having said that, the “Advice for Traders” page dedicated to the Ordinance explains that any step that is taken to ensure the safety of the goods, such as testing your products or require certificates or lab test reports from your supplier, can be used in your defense, in the case a problem arises.
Below you find a shortlist of widely recognized international standards for apparel. Even if these standards are voluntary, you can follow them in order to improve the safety and quality of your products.
EN Standards for Apparel
a. EN 14682 – Cords and drawstrings on children’s clothing
b. EN 14878 – Burning behavior of children’s nightwear
c. EN 1103 – Detailed procedure to determine the burning behavior of fabrics for apparel
ASTM Standards for Apparel
a. ASTM D1230 Standard Test Method for Flammability of Apparel Textiles
b. ASTM F1816-97 Standard Safety Specification for Drawstrings on Children’s Upper Outerwear
c. ASTM D6545-10 Standard Test Method for Flammability of Textiles Used in Children’s Sleepwear
The Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance requires that the labeling content and warnings for general consumer products indicating the safekeeping, use, consumption or disposal of the goods must be written in both English and Chinese. And such labels must firmly adhere to the products.
For textile products, even if it’s not specifically required, it’s generally recommended to add the country of origin, care instructions, size, and fiber composition information.
You shall not rely on your manufacturer when it comes down to the information and layout of your labeling files. If you want to minimize the risk of misunderstandings, it’s better that you create the files in .ai or .eps format, and submit them to your manufacturer.
Apparel Lab Testing
The Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance does not provide any mandatory standards and testing methods upon the consumer products market in Hong Kong for textile products.
However, due to the general principle of keeping products safe for consumers, the Ordinance encourages manufacturers, importers, and suppliers to arrange safety tests by a laboratory to confirm their safety before placing your apparel, such as t-shirts or trousers, in the market.
Approved laboratories are either accredited under the Hong Kong Laboratory Accreditation Scheme (HOKLAS) or have concluded mutual recognition agreements (MRA) with HOKLAS.
Here a list of labs that are accredited by HOKLAS:
- QIMA Testing (HK)
- SGS Hong Kong
- TÜV SÜD Hong Kong
- Intertek Testing Services Hong Kong
You can visit this page to find more HOKLAS accredited labs.