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Arrangements for regulation of chemicals during the coronavirus pandemic

HSE is continuing to provide services for regulating chemicals during the coronavirus pandemic.

We’ve made some administrative changes, these are set out below for each chemical regime, with updated details on how you can contact us.

Plant protection products

You should contact us during this period in the normal way by email to: [email protected] or [email protected]

For applications, we will no longer be able to accept hard copies in the post. Please send all correspondence by email to [email protected]

If you need to send data packages on CD/DVD (as they are too large for email), please also email [email protected] to discuss alternative methods.

We will no longer issue authorisations by post. If you have not signed up to our e-approvals service (please do not send a letter through the post; instead email [email protected]), you will then be offered the option to receive your authorisation via email when your documents are ready to be issued.

Invoices will continue to be sent by hard copy. If you do not receive your invoice, please email [email protected]

Export certificates will be sent electronically in pdf format. It will include our contact details for overseas authorities to confirm the validity of the document with us.

We will not carry out any Official Recognition inspections of efficacy testing organisations during the pandemic.

Biocidal products

You should contact us during this period in the normal way, by email to:  

Applications

Applications made under the EU Biocidal Products Regulation (BPR) and the UK Control of Pesticides Regulations (COPR) should continue as usual i.e. for BPR via R4BP3 to the European Chemical Agency (ECHA) and for COPR by using the FEPA1 form.

Authorisation/Approval Documentation

We will no longer issue authorisations/approvals by post. BPR authorisations will be uploaded to R4BP3 as normal but an electronic copy will also be sent by email. COPR approvals will be issued via email during this period.

Invoices

BPR invoices will be uploaded to R4BP3 as usual. Copies of COPR invoices will be sent out by email.

Certificates of Free Sale

Certificates of Free Sale will be sent out electronically and applicants should continue to send their requests to the appropriate email account, i.e. [email protected] or [email protected].

Prior Informed Consent (PIC)

Exporters should continue to submit notifications via ePIC. Where we need to wait for consent from the importing country, there may be delays in responding. Should you have any concerns about this please contact us at [email protected].

Any outstanding Article 10 annual reports for exports and imports of PIC chemicals made in 2019 can still be submitted via ePIC. The formal deadline was 31st March 2020, however ECHA have recently extended the submission period until 31 May 2020.

Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation & restriction of Chemicals (REACH) and Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP)

Businesses should interact as normal with ECHA who are continuing to operate. ECHA have issued a press release about the granting of extensions to certain deadlines and being flexible about their regulatory processes.

Queries on other matters should be directed to our helpdesk at [email protected].

Further information for all regimes

Hard copy post

Avoid sending hard copy mail wherever possible and instead send information electronically. Please let us know by email of any instances where this is not possible.

Freedom of Information Act and Environmental Information Regulations requests.

We would appreciate your support by ceasing or keeping new requests to an absolute minimum during the period of the pandemic.

We are unable to redact information with our current process and are developing an alternative method. Consultation with data owners may take longer than normal, depending on their availability.

Delays

We appreciate there may be some challenges on a few regulatory-related matters, e.g. laboratories closing leading to delays in generating data and retail outlets closing preventing disposal of stocks where authorisations have been withdrawn.

Please contact us if you are experiencing any potential delays at this time, so we can assist.

Keeping in touch

To ensure you are kept informed, please check our HSE COVID webpages and subscribe to our e-bulletin services.

2020-06-11