How long is a UN test report valid for?

Marc Martens Marc Martens Facebook Linkedin

After extensive testing, hazmat packaging receives a specific UN marking. The certification body records this marking in a test report. UN packaging is valid for 5 years, but how long is the test report valid for?

“That varies from country to country”, said Maxence Wittebolle from the Belgian Packaging Institute BVI. “A UN test report has unlimited validity in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. In France and England it is valid for five years.”

Why is the validity different in those countries?

“It comes down to differences in the legislation of those countries. Until 1992, for instance, a UN test report was valid for five years in Belgium. This was later amended to unlimited validity. The product was undergoing annual inspections. The government found that limiting the validity of a UN test report added very little value.”

There are differences in the legislation between countries

But what if something in a packaging changes?

“To have unlimited validity, a UN test report must meet three conditions. The product must be inspected every year. The product cannot be altered in any way and there cannot be any changes to the legislation which affect the product. When one or more of the above conditions applies, then the product must be retested.”

Avoid unnecessary risks when transporting hazardous goods

There are lots of risks associated with the transportation of hazardous goods. Think well in advance about what you are going to transport and how you going to transport it. Choose reliable suppliers that can facilitate the legal requirements. By doing this you will avoid precarious situations and unnecessary costs.


All CurTec packaging bears a UN marking for solids. Our UN test reports have unlimited validity because they were issued in Belgium and The Netherlands. Do you ship hazmat and would you like packaging advice? We are happy to assist.

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