Members' Research Service By / July 19, 2023

Classification, labelling and packaging of chemical substances and mixtures [EU Legislation in Progress]

Chemicals are the basic elements of countless materials and products. The European Union (EU) is the second largest producer of chemicals in the world (after China), with a sales turnover of €594 billion and 15 % of global sales in 2021.

© T. Michel / Adobe Stock

Written by Vivienne Halleux (1st edition).

In December 2022, the European Commission proposed a revision of the Regulation on the classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures, one of the two cornerstones of the EU’s framework regulating chemicals. The revision, announced in the EU chemicals strategy for sustainability, notably seeks to identify and classify hazardous chemicals more comprehensively; improve communication on chemical hazards and the notification of relevant information to poison centres for emergency health response; and address online sales more effectively.

Industry has expressed particular concern about the proposed rules for classifying multi-constituent substances, grouping substances for harmonised classification and labelling, and label formatting. Non-governmental organisations, mainly supportive of the revision, stress the need to set deadlines, cover further hazards and nanoforms of substances, and do more to limit animal testing.

The co-legislators are considering the text. Parliament’s Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, responsible for the file, is planning to vote on its legislative report in September 2023. The Council adopted its general approach on 30 June 2023.


Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council on classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures
Committee responsible:Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI)COM(2022) 748 final
Rapporteur:Maria Spyraki (EPP, Greece)2022/0432(COD)
Shadow rapporteurs:João Albuquerque (S&D, Portugal)
Martin Hojsík (Renew, Slovakia)
Jutta Paulus (Greens/EFA, Germany)
Pietro Fiocchi (ECR, Italy)
Danilo Oscar Lancini (ID, Italy)
Anja Hazekamp (The Left, the Netherlands)
Ordinary legislative procedure
(COD) (Parliament and Council
on equal footing – formerly ‘co-decision’)
Next steps expected: Vote in committee on draft report

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