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Cookware and Kitchenware Quality Management

Avoid Risks of Food Contamination

All products that enter in contact with food may release harmful substances during their usage; thus assessing the risk of compliance issues and complying with EU or other local regulations is a must for any brands, importers or retailers. Heat, cold, lubricants and water can affect the consistency of the product and can create conditions conducive to chemicals migration into the food product.

As there is no space between the food and the plate, do not take the risk of having chemical compounds spoil the meal: ask API to produce an assessment it.

Our laboratories in Hong-Kong, Ningbo, and in France can perform either mechanical or chemical tests necessary for the food contact compatibility evaluation and the overall product fit for use.

Why Entrust API with Your Food Contact Product Quality Control?

  • Because we provide a broad range of testing solutions in through Asian and European entities. In specific terms, every day, API releases nearly 30 inspections reports for kitchen and cookware items.
  • Because we are endorsed by the key sector players: Leading distributors such as the world’s second largest mass market retailer rely on API for their food contact products inspections and products specialists such as world famous German brands entrust API with their kitchenware quality control and lab testing across Asia.
  • Because we are constantly building our capabilities to meet all the market needs: In Europe we are investing in new testing capacities for our French lab to provide you with lab testing facilities in your home market.

Cookware and Kitchenware Tests API provide

Our Hong-Kong HOKLAS accredited lab can provide you with the capacity to evaluate inertness (that is having only a limited ability to react chemically) as well as the composition of the food-contact materials. In more specific terms, API can help you assess whether the related materials are in compliance with European directives.


Evaluation of the potential migration of lead, cadmium and/or chromium 6.

Plastic Materials

Evaluation of the overall migration process. Plastic materials and articles shall not transfer their constituents to foodstuffs in quantities exceeding 10mg/dm2 of surface area of material or article (overall migration limit).

Stainless Steel

Evaluation of the minimum Chromium content (13%), as well as any possible added elements, Ta, Nb and Zr a maximum content of 1%. We also evaluate the content of the other possible added elements, with a maximum content of 4%: Mo, Ti, Al and Cu. Elements which are not mentioned in the order may be used within the limits written down in the stainless steel sheet of the DGCCRF.
Applicable text: French order of 13/01/1976.
Related standard: NF A 36 711 : “Steel other than packaging- Stainless steel designed to come into contact with foodstuffs, products and drinks for human and animal consumptions.”

Cookware and Kitchenware Quality Management Tests API Provide


Evaluation of potential migration of lead and cadmium.

The applicable texts that address these materials are:

  • The Directive EC 84/500 (modified by directive EC 2005-31) which defines the categories of items, criteria and procedures
  • Specifically for France the French Order of 7/11/1985 (modified by the order of 23/05/2006), which is the French transposition of previous directives

Papers and Boards

  • For materials in contact with dried and oil-free foodstuffs
  • For materials in contact with wet and/or fat foodstuffs


  • Kind of wood (based on manufacturer data )
  • Wood treatment; in particular no treatment with pentachlorophenol (PCP) and its derivatives

Where no specific European directive exists, national provisions shall apply. For more details please see the national regulation summary. When working with sourcing partners in Asia, API can also provide you with: HKIAS endorsed third-party inspection based on in-house procedure

Food Contact Key European Directive

In order to avoid risk from contamination by food contact with by-products, European regulators have defined three key principles under its key directive EC1935/2004 :

  • Inertness principle: defined in terms of overall migration and specific migrations
  • Composition principle: elaboration of a positive list of components which are allowed in the manufacturing of materials (depending on the material)
  • Labelling principle: special mentions must appear on materials that are allowed to come into contact with foodstuffs.

The European regulatory apparatus has also established the scope of the products defined as food contact materials such as:

  • Packaging materials;
  • Cutlery and dishes;
  • Processing machines;
  • Containers;
  • Materials and articles in contact with water for human consumption.
  • The term does not cover fixed public or private water supply equipment.

Audit: Evaluating the factory from which you are sourcing cookware and kitchenware

In order to improve your overall product quality, you will also need subject the production process to a more detailed analysis. API Audit has developed Audit grids to help you understand the overall factory capabilities from:

  • Product development
  • Identification and traceability
  • Handling of incoming goods
  • Manufacturing process
  • Finished products control
  • Quality assurance

An Example of Factory Audit Checks Points:

Factory Quality Profile

Audit: Evaluating the factory from which you are sourcing cookware and kitchenware

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