Regulatory Affairs Directorate
Market Surveillance Directorate


Regulation (EC) No 648/2004 establishes rules designed to achieve the free movement of detergents and surfactants for detergents in the internal market while, at the same time, ensuring a high degree of protection of the environment and human health.  For this purpose, this Regulation harmonises the following rules for the placing on the market of detergents and of surfactants for detergents:

  • the biodegradability of surfactants in detergents;
  • restrictions or bans on surfactants on grounds of biodegradability;
  • the additional labelling of detergents, including fragrance allergens; and
  • the information that manufacturers must hold at the disposal of the Member States competent authorities and medical personnel.

The Detergents (Implementation) Regulations of 2007 (Legal Notice 363 of 2007) implement the provisions of Regulation (EC) No 648 of 2004.  Furthermore these regulations establish the languages that are allowed for the labelling of detergents.

Regulation (EC) No 648/2004 on Detergents:,&pos=1&page=1&nbl=1&pgs=10&hwords=


Information on amendments to Regulation (EC) No 648/2004 can be accessed at the Commission’s Enterprise website concerning detergents: