UFI format

The UFI format – UFI stands for Unique Formula Identifier – is an alphanumeric code of 16 characters that is required on the label of all mixtures that are classified for health or physical hazards (H2xx and/or H3xx) and put on the market in EU. The code is created by an algorithm based on a VAT-number and a formulation number. The UFI format is used to define the formulation of hazardous mixtures. The condition for assigning a UFI is that all products labelled and notified with the same UFI code need to share the same formulation. We are happy to provide more information about the UFI format and answer the most frequently asked questions. If you have another question or if you still would like some more information, feel free to contact us. We will be happy to help you. 

It’s not only important that you provide your product with a UFI code, but you are also required to submit certain information about your product to the European Poison Center Notification (PCN) portal. This information should among other include the formulation, trade name, product category, packaging, colour and toxicological information about the product. 

The importance of a UFI format/code 

The unique formula identifier (UFI) must be placed on the hazard label of dangerous products. Why is this so important? The UFI number is actually the license plate of the product. By mentioning the UFI code, the hazardous ingredients of the mixture can be directly identified by the poison centers. Each formulation has its own unique code. In  case of emergency like accidents with hazardous substances. With the UFI format, the poison center can quickly discover which substances are present and what follow-up action is required. In this way, the UFI format makes it possible to act adequately and quickly in the event of an emergency or other situations. 

How do you create a UFI format? 

There are a number of steps involved in the creation of a UFI code. There are also a few things you need to create a UFI code for your mixture that is unique to your company. These things are your company’s VAT number and the formulation-specific formulation number. It is very important that you do not re-use the same formulation number in combination with the same VAT number when mixtures have different formulations. Take your time for creating a UFI format, because it is not always easy from an administrative point of view. However, it is very important to create these codes so that they can be stated on the label. If your product does not have a UFI format, you are not complying with the legislation and regulations which can result in serious problems. But creating the UFI code is not the only thing you need to do. Creating the UFI is not enough and should be followed by notifying the UFI-code to the PCN portal. Only when notified the UFI-code gets it real value. 

When should the UFI code be on the product? 

The UFI format must be stated on the product as soon as the product has been registered/notified to the new PCN portal, in accordance with the new CLP Regulation. The use of a UFI format/code is therefore always combined with registration with the poison center. Without registration, the use of a UFI has no added value. 

When must a new UFI code be created? 

As mentioned before, a UFI format applies to hazardous mixtures. But when is something a hazardous mixture? A UFI format is mandatory for mixtures put on the market that are classified for physical hazards or health hazards. It may be the case that the same UFI code appears on several products. In this case, the formulation of the products must be exactly the same. So the composition of the product must be identical. When, for example, an ingredient is added to the mixture or when an ingredient is omitted, the composition requires a different UFI code. It is therefore necessary to pay close attention and keep the correct records. 

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