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Friday, May 05, 2006

Sun Protection Factor EU25

Whilst munching breakfast this morning, it was mentioned on the news that the EU is planning to standardise labelling for Sun Cream.

It was a great example of how organisations use the facts to justify their actions. Often the facts may be true, but at closer investigation, irrelevant.

Take this statement:

The commission identified false boasts on suntan products. These include claims that products can act as "sun blocker" or that they offer "total protection" or "100% anti-UVA/UVB". A spokesman said: "It is impossible to offer this, so no such products can exist."
If this is true, then the sellers of these products are surely covered by existing legislation. Forbidding people to make false claims on packaging has after all been around for a very long time.

Another thing mentioned on TV was that the protection factor was misleading, because it referred to laboratory conditions, which were not the same as on the beach.

But seeing as the general public has no idea how their skin behaves under laboratory conditions, but rather buy the level of protection that they find suits their needs, this is a completely misleading statement. The only thing important here is that the numbers actually do reflect a measure of the creams ability to protect.

Once again, there may be small issues to be resolved here, but the information is deliberately misleading and the case for EU wide action strangely absent from the press release.


AntiCitizenOne said...

the EU should only be a brand.

Ellee Seymour said...

Can you remember an EU working hours directive from last year involving building site workmen and protecting their skin from the sun's harsh rays?

Ellee Seymour said...

I've just been reminded by my contact in Brussels that it was called the "sunshine directive" and was kicked out by Conservatives for being a rubbish idea!