PCN Europe

In the past, the way in which you could obtain a PCN varied enormously between the different countries of Europe.


Each country had its own rules, guidelines and procedures for the notification of products containing mixtures of hazardous substances. In the United Kingdom, for example, the supply of an SDS was sufficient, whereas in Germany the rules and procedures were a lot stricter. To change this and to make uniform agreements, the PCN (Poison Center Notification) was introduced. Thanks to the PCN, all countries that are members of the EEA (all EU countries plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) now have the same rules, guidelines and procedures when it comes to applying for a PCN.  Although the application for a PCN in Europe is now much more transparent, it has not become any easier. Therefore, we at the SDS Factory are happy to help you with such an application. Please feel free to contact us. Our competent team is ready to assist you.


The ultimate goal of the PCN in Europe is to establish preventive and curative measures that need to be taken when the health of one or more persons is endangered through contact with a hazardous mixture. These measures can only be taken when there is sufficient and correct information available about the product containing the specific mixture. Who is responsible for providing this information? The stricter CLP legislation states that all companies that market and/or import products containing hazardous mixtures are obliged to provide sufficient and correct information about the product.
The companies that can be held accountable for this are called duty holders. These companies will be held accountable when information about the product is not correct or sufficient. The unified PCN in Europe is thus established in the interests of user safety. One of the most important aspects of the PCN in Europe is the UFI code. We would like to tell you more about this code.


As we have just briefly mentioned, the UFI code is extremely important for any PCN in Europe. But why is that? The UFI code was introduced by the European government, because poison notification centers experienced difficulty in identifying the composition of a mixture. To facilitate this process, it was decided that every mixture of hazardous substances should be given an alphanumeric code: the Unique Formula Identifier code, or UFI code for short. This code is applied or printed on the label of the product in which the mixture is contained.

Those calling the poison centre in the event of a calamity can subsequently read this code from the label. This makes it much easier for the poison centre to determine which mixture is involved in the calamity, and therefore the right measures can be taken more quickly. However, the UFI code is not a replacement for the identification of mixture composition, but a supplementary tool.

The most important aspect concerning the UFI codes is that a certain code remains valid as long as the composition of the mixture remains unchanged. It is therefore possible that the name or the packaging of a product changes, but that the UFI code remains the same. However, if there is a change in the composition of the product or if an extra element is added to, replaced and/or removed from the mixture, then the UFI code is no longer valid.

In that case, a new UFI code must be created. Also, the product will have to be re-registered to comply with the PCN in Europe. So in short, a UFI code is linked to a specific formulation and not to a product or brand name. This makes it an indispensable part of the PCN in Europe.


At SDS Factory, we understand very well that registering a product with the PCN in Europe has become an administrative nightmare for most companies. Due to stricter laws and regulations, you have to provide much more information in the new portal. Just the administration of all UFI codes and formulation numbers is already a day’s work.

Besides, each individual country can also request additional information on the format. This usually means that you spend even longer applying for a PCN verification in Europe than before. But this is where we at the SDS Factory can and will assist you. With our years of experience and expertise in the field, we can simplify the process for you. We are committed to make working with hazardous substances safer for everyone involved.

How can we help?

Please select the services we can assist you with from the list on the side, and send us a message. We will get back to you promptly. If you prefer to call us directly or send an email, click on the links below.