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23 July 2007 – New Regulation To Harmonise European Sunbed Industry
The European Sunlight Association (ESA) today welcomed the introduction of the new Declaration from the European Commission Health and Consumer Directorate, which requires sunbeds to comply to a maximum erythemal output of 0.3W/m², effective from 23 July 2007. Simply put, this means that each sunbed session taken in a tanning salon will have a maximum UV output that matches the mid-day, Mediterranean sun.
Consumers will be confident that the maximum irradiance per sunbed session has now been approved by the EU. Another benefit to the consumer is that a tan achieved over a longer, controlled exposure period, as dictated by the Declaration, will be deeper and will, therefore, last longer.
The ESA anticipates that EU approved session times will help restore consumer confidence in those markets where the sunbed industry has suffered from ongoing negative publicity. This is particularly important when considering the many medically and scientifically recognised health and wellbeing benefits of using controlled UV exposure to acquire and maintain vitamin D levels.
The Declaration, which will result in a new European Standard in due course, was the result of various member countries implementing different regulations for sunbeds and the European Commission desiring a harmonised approach. ESA was actively involved with the consultation group that produced the original report from which the Declaration was published.
Frank Harbusch, ESA Secretary General, said, “The speed with which this Declaration had to be implemented, six months as opposed to the usual 3-5 years, has created confusion and frustration for our members and no doubt we will see it adopted in some countries more quickly than in others. However, once we have overcome this hurdle, we will have a European-wide standard and this has to be welcomed.”
As the regulatory framework varies from country to country, it will be the responsibility of the appropriate authorities in each member country to implement the Declaration. In the UK, the national trade body and ESA member, The Sunbed Association, will continue to work closely with government departments and agencies.