In general, non-CE marked products may be shown at trade fairs, exhibitions and demonstrations. However, the language that supports this statement varies by Directive. In all cases, the manufacturer has an obligation to inform potential customers that the product being exhibited is not CE compliant.
Non-CE Marked Products used for Marketing Purposes:
a) Must be clearly marked showing they are not to be sold or put into service until they are brought up to compliance. Interested parties must be informed that the equipment does not comply and cannot be purchased in its current condition.
- We recommend affixing labels on the exterior of the unit which are clearly visible which state “For demonstration purposes only – not available for purchase” or equivalent. Alternatively, a sign on or adjacent to the product is also considered acceptable.
b) Sales Literature made available during the exhibition should also include a similar indication that the product is not available for purchase in its current configuration. You may also choose to state that CE compliant units will be available for purchase in the future.
Directive References: Most CE Directives (EMC, RED, MD, CPR, PED, etc.) include this exception in the section of the Directive covering the “free movement of goods”. The Low Voltage Directive (LVD) does not contain this language. However, the official EU Blue Guide includes this language and therefore covers all products for the EU.
- The EMC Directive specifies that non-CE products can only be operated during demonstration “provided that adequate measures have been taken to avoid electromagnetic disturbances”.
- Other Directives such as the ATEX & Machinery Directives similarly note that “during demonstrations, adequate safety measures shall be taken to ensure the protection of persons”.
Special Considerations: While it is permissible to exhibit and demonstrate the operation of non-CE compliant products, keep in mind that the CE compliance process takes time, and in many cases, design revision. The best way to insure you can meet delivery commitments on new sales to the EU is to have the CE mark in advance. This also insures that you know the full cost of an EU deliverable product.
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