The OCCL network in brief

The European Network of Official Cosmetic Control Laboratories was set-up by the EDQM in 2009. It brings together laboratories that are responsible for testing and controlling the quality and safety of cosmetics at national level. Today, more than 50 OCCLs participate in this network from Europe and beyond with a common mission of protecting consumer health.

Sharing knowledge, excellent analytical skills

Enhancing the analytical, testing and control capabilities of participating laboratories is key to help them ensure the safety of consumers in their respective countries. Pooling resources, avoiding duplication of studies, sharing knowledge and experience on analytical methods… these are just a few of the advantages of working in the OCCL Network, whose added value is based on resource sharing.

Thanks to a wide range of joint programmes and activities, participating laboratories can achieve far greater analytical, testing and control capabilities than they would individually. Each laboratory may in fact be specialised in specific sectors and can run tests on behalf of other laboratories in different countries. Cooperating within the Network also provides wider opportunities for discussing common problems that laboratories may encounter in their daily activities and for submitting proposals to decision makers within their respective governments. A laboratory facing technical challenges with specific analytical methods, for example, can consult specialists within the OCCL network for solutions and advice. Mutual support also consists of sharing specific analytical equipment that can be available only to some OCCL Network members.

In this regard, the work of the Network also contributes to implementing the legal framework of the EU, which requires market surveillance for protecting consumers and for ensuring a level playing field within the EU single market. The initiatives coordinated by the OCCL Network provide dedicated support to ensuring consumer safety across the EU, as well as compliance with the EU single market provisions.

  • Discover more about EU legislation on cosmetics here.
  • Find out more about the most recent studies carried out within the OCCLs Network.
What is an OCCL?

An OCCL is a public institution tasked with performing laboratory testing of cosmetics for the purpose of market surveillance. More than 50 OCCLs participate in the OCCL Network. Participation is open to member states which are Parties to the Convention on the Elaboration of a European Pharmacopoeia of the Council of Europe and to observers/observer states.

Network membership is open to publicly funded, independent laboratories, which have implemented a quality management system as laid down in ISO/IEC 17025:2017 (or equivalent), and have suitable rules in place for sub-contracting certain types of work.

OCCLs Network members at a glance

How to join?

Official Cosmetics Control Laboratories in eligible member states may join the Network.

Official observers of the European Pharmacopoeia are also invited to participate in Network activities such as coordinated market surveillance studies, proficiency testing and different types of expert meetings.

To enquire about membership and projects, contact the OCCL Network Secretariat: [email protected]