Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)

Business.com / Strategy / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)is a government agency that regulates and monitors the safety of various ...

The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)is a government agency that regulates and monitors the safety of various consumer products, including toys, baby items, power tools and household chemicals. The CPSC develops standards of safety for items that could cause mechanical, chemical or electrical hazards or cause injuries to children.

The CPSC issues bans on dangerous products and recalls products that are deemed unsafe. Information about unsafe products is gathered from consumer hot lines and from surveys of emergency rooms. The CPSC provides information that can be valuable for small businesses. Some of the ways the CPSC may affect your business include:

1. Businesses that manufacture or market consumer goods should consult the CPSC guidelines to ensure that their products meet labeling and safety requirements.

2. The CPSC lists recalls of products that may be used by local businesses.

3. The CPSC offers helpful, specific guidelines for businesses like resale shops and childcare centers.

Get information about U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission regulations and guidelines

Get information about guidelines and regulations for the products you manufacturer or sell.
Product regulations are listed on the Consumer Product Safety Commission website. You can search for the product by name or component, or view an alphabetical listing of regulated products and the corresponding law. CPSC guidelines are listed by industry. Get information about recall programs, testing manuals, laboratories and regulations. Guidelines for thrift shops and other resale stores are also available. Download handbooks by product type in a PDF format.

Get product recall information

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued thousands of recalls since its creation in 1973. If you resell items or use any potentially hazardous items in your business, check on previous and new product recalls.
The CPSC recall section allows you to search for recalls by date, product category, company, product description or possible hazard. You can also sign up for RSS feeds to get information about new recalls - especially useful if you resell products or use toys and infant products as part of a childcare service. Recalls.gov lists up-to-date recall news and information from the CPSC and other federal safety agencies.

Check other regulating agencies

Some products, like food, drugs and vehicles, are not regulated by the CPSC but by other government agencies. If you are a reseller or manufacturer of these items, get regulatory guidelines from the appropriate agency.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issues guidelines for food products and drugs and includes a comprehensive list of recalls on its website. The Highway Traffic Safety Administration regulates vehicles, vehicle accessories and child safety seats.
  • If you find that your product does not meet CPSC standards, a voluntary recall is the best course of action. Although damage control is still necessary, consumers will view a voluntary recall more favorably than a mandated one.

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