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Product certification

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Framework

In the case of product certification, the continuous monitoring of the conformity of the manufactured product is entrusted to the producer or supplier itself.  A certification body, acting as an impartial and independent 'third party', monitors the credibility of this self-monitoring. This supervision is mainly based on inspections, which are carried out by a certification body.

A producer or supplier who, on the basis of reliable and traceable self-checking, is able to maintain the conformity of his product, receives a certificate from the certification body. This certificate authorises the producer or supplier to apply the quality mark to his product and/or his delivery documents.

Depending on the product and the situation, alternatives to the marks mentioned below are possible, in the form of an equivalent quality mark, a batch inspection or an acceptance test by the client.

Role of COPRO

COPRO functions as a certification body in the construction sector and has a BELAC accreditation according to the ISO/IEC 17065 standard.

Meanwhile COPRO certifies more than 500 production units for 50 differents products.

COPRO is accredited by BELAC under certificate number 107 PROD.

BELAC 107 PROD

Types of quality marks

In addition to the legally required CE marking, there are voluntary quality marks.

These are quality marks because they guarantee that the certified product meets well-defined quality requirements. They are voluntary quality marks because they are organised by the market and are not imposed by law. These quality marks can be applied when the parties voluntarily agree to such. 

Certificate

The certificate is proof of the confidence that the certification body has in the self-monitoring of the producer or supplier. A producer or supplier must first demonstrate during a trial period that it is able to respect the Application Regulation and the requirements of the Technical Prescription, before the certification body issues the certificate.

If you want to check the validity of a certificate, you can do so on our website via the search field. The valid certificates are also displayed via the product applications and the 'certificate file' section.

A certificate confirms only the confidence in the self-monitoring of a certificate holder for a product at a production unit. It makes no judgement about confidence in the conformity of a specific product. For this, the technical datasheet(s) must be consulted. 

Procedure

The beating heart of product certification is the Advisory Board (for COPRO certification) or the Sectoral Committee (for BENOR certification). These working groups are organised by the sectoral organisation or by the certification body for the relevant product. They are composed of representatives of the building developers, users, producers and experts. 

This group develops – preferably by consensus – the rules that certificate holders must follow, and lists the requirements that apply in the context of certification. The rules are published in the form of an Application Regulation - Règlement d’Application (TRA); the requirements are collected in a Technical Prescription (PTV). These requirements can concern staff, equipment, the production unit, the raw materials, the production process and the end product itself. The Application Regulation contains all the rules that the certificate holder must follow in its self-monitoring in order to meet these requirements on an ongoing basis.

The Application Regulation and the Technical Prescription also serve as guidelines for external oversight that will be carried out by the inspection body/bodies. See inspection.

Each inspection body reports to the concerned certification body. The latter will evaluate the findings of the inspection body and – in the case of nonconforming products – impose measures or sanctions. These sanctions can vary from stricter oversight, a temporary suspension of the certificate, to even permanent withdrawal of the certificate.

COPRO functions as a certification body in accordance with established procedures, which are based on the ISO/IEC 17065 standard and are accredited by BELAC. COPRO is accredited by BELAC under certificate number 107 PROD.

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Advantages

Thanks to product certification

  • the project owner has a quality guarantee for the used products, processes or services on the basis of which it can forgo a prior inspection;
  • the designer and the architect can focus their attention on their assignment and on the quality of the construction works;
  • the contractor has an additional guarantee that it is working with quality products;
  • the supplier enjoys the necessary trust of the user in the products, processes or services supplied. 

How to recognise?

To recognise a certified article, at least a technical datasheet and a delivery note are required.

Generally, certification can be recognised by: 

  • IDENTIFICATION OF THE ARTICLE: 

The quality mark is displayed on the product, the product packaging or on the delivery documents. The quality mark is usually supplemented with an identification, which can consist of a reference to the certificate, the technical datasheet, the PTV, the article and/or the certificate holder. The technical prescriptions (PTV) for the product demonstrate what this identification should look like. You can find this document for each product via the search function on our website.

  • DELIVERY NOTE: 

To verify which article was supplied by a supplier, the customer must have a delivery note. This contains a series of data that fully identify the article and make it traceable.

  • TECHNICAL DATASHEET: 

To verify whether a specific article is certified, the website of the certification body must be consulted. This is the only way to check whether a valid technical datasheet exists for this article. The more than 8,000 technical datasheets of all COPRO certified products can be found on the COPRO Extranet

  • CERTIFICATE: 

To verify whether or not a supplier has a certificate for a specific production unit, the website of the certification body must be consulted. This is the only way to check whether a certificate is currently valid. However, a certificate says nothing about the certification of a specific article. Not all articles that a supplier places on the market are certified. To be certain about this, you need a technical datasheet. 

  • STILL IN DOUBT?

Be sure to contact one of our staff. Under ‘Contact’ you will find the right contact person for each product.