A behind-the-scenes look at creating a compliant bespoke promotional product masterpiece! #PPWeek 2015

Here at The Sourcing Team, we love collaborating with our designers and factories developing new bespoke promotional merchandise. However, there is no point creating a wonderful design if it’s not possible to manufacture it or for it to pass mandatory product safety compliance tests.  When we develop new concepts, we consider everything from design, production, branding possibilities, flexibility and functionality to ensure the final product meets all product safety requirements.

Don’t mind if we say so ourselves, but we have quite unique skills and expertise in creating bespoke premiums for global brands and managing the whole process from concept through to delivery.

We work closely with our testing partners to ensure all materials and specifications will pass the required tests and ensure we cover all possibilities of usage!

Food contact testing requires strict compliance, there are many different migration tests so it’s important to understand the type of food the product is to be used for, or could possibly be used for. Could the plastic contain any phthalates? Is there a high risk of cadmium being present? Does the product need to be dishwasher safe or suitable for use in the microwave or freezer? Where does it end..?

Whilst your sample may have passed all product safety/compliance tests, are you sure that the material being used in bulk production is from the same batch that the samples were produced? Often this is not the case as the bulk batch isn’t ordered until samples are approved or is still being produced whilst sampling is underway. So, the testing is just the start of it – you could say it’s the easy bit.

Managing the traceability can indeed be very challenging and is also a critical factor to ensuring compliance throughout bulk production. It doesn’t end there… checking the conditions of the factory (and we're not talking ethical and labour here – we’re beyond that now), including basic cleanliness and hygiene of the factory, the workers and the processes involved in the making of your product.

Imagine buying a mug or ice lolly mould from a shop (or received it as a free gift with purchase) and you get it home only to find there is dirt, or even worse, a hair in said gift! That wouldn’t leave a very good 'taste' (excuse the pun!) of the brand that gifted that item.

We have vast experience of GMP & HACCP and this is where we work very closely with our factories and clients to ensure we set the right plans and measures. This means you can be assured The Sourcing Team deliver amazing, creative promotional products that meet full safety standards, produced in the right conditions - ensuring the brand is remembered for all the right reasons!

Take a look at a few of our bespoke campaigns.

If you would like any advice on product compliance or a specific campaign - feel free to call Becky Fleury (our compliance specialist) on 020 8666 0781 or email beckyfleury@sourcing.co.uk