Following the launch of its new market surveillance project, PE quizzes the Lighting Industry Association (LIA) about the impact this could have on raising the standards of lighting products within the sector.
Q Why has the LIA decided to run this new market surveillance project?
On many occasions the lighting industry has tried to ﬁnd a solution for the poor quality, non-compliant products entering the UK market unchecked, creating confusion and unfair competition.
So, in an unprecedented move to prove the quality of their products, last month saw ALL of LIA’s members commit to participate in an industry-wide market surveillance initiative. This initiative will include random inspection and testing of member’s products – the ﬁrst of its kind by a lighting trade association.
Q How long is the project likely to run for, or will it be ongoing?
The project will form part of the terms and conditions of being an LIA member and so will run for the foreseeable future.
Q What does the LIA and its members hope to achieve as a result of the project?
This is not a name and shame or ‘point scoring’ exercise. It is a serious attempt to create a real differential to ensure the market has access to compliant and quality lighting products.
This initiative and the independent results it will yield will help bring clarity to the industry and give the supply chain conﬁdence that buying from LIA members ensures they’re safe and compliant.
Q Are there specific products that the LIA will be targeting or will all lighting-based products potentially be open for inspection/testing?
The whole of the LIA’s membership range will be covered. Products ranging from lamps, domestic and commercial luminaires as well as outdoor and street lighting.
Q What standards are the random samples likely to be monitored against and what will happen if a partaking member’s product(s) fall below these standards?
The products selected will undergo a review of the technical file (CE Marking) and be assessed as appropriate against any performance claims made by the manufacturer. Should the LIA identify a non-compliance we will enter into a discussion with the manufacturer and agree the corrective action(s). Should these actions not be agreed or followed, the company will be expelled from LIA membership.
Q Is there any ‘quality mark’ or type of identification that can be used in future to help electricians and wholesalers to identify compliant products?
By agreeing to random market testing, this particular initiative shows that LIA members are committed to producing quality products. As such, electricians and wholesalers can be confident when stocking or specifying such items.
In addition, the LIA operates an additional quality scheme known as ‘LIA Product Verified’, whereby manufacturers have their products extensively tested by the LIA’s accredited laboratory and the results are openly published on our website. In this instance, both electricians and wholesalers can be confident that these products having been assessed and are fully compliant with UK and European standards.