The KEYMARK - The Key to the European Market
A uniform Product Quality Mark for European Consumers
Europe grows together - even in the product marking. Since January 2002 the consumer can carry out his purchases in one currency in Europe. Now he can be sure as well that products, marked with the KEYMARK, comply with uniform European (EN) Quality Standards.
On recommendation of the European Council to improve the consumer protection and to counteract the uncertainty of consumers by a mark variety, the European Standards Organizations CEN and CENELEC have developed a harmonised European Mark System for standardized products.
The KEYMARK is the European Certification Mark showing the conformity of products and services with European Standards.
Whereas CE-marking shows the observance of legal minimum requirements, the KEYMARK provides a real surplus value for the consumer: tested and certified observance of uniform European Quality Standards. The legally requested CE-marking for certain products can be completed thereby in a meaningful way.
A product may only be marked with the KEYMARK, if it was tested and certified before by a neutral, independent and competent body. The factory inspection and Initial Type Testing (ITT), apart from the regular inspection, constitute an important element of the procedure for granting the KEYMARK.
Beyond that, the manufacturer has to carry out a Factory Production Control (FPC) in consideration of the relevant product standards and the elements of the EN ISO 9000 series. This quality system is controlled by an annual inspection and is completed by type testing which takes place at least every 2 years.
Testing laboratories, inspection and certification bodies, taking part in the procedure, have to prove an accreditation according to relevant standards. Furthermore, certification bodies have to be empowered to grant the KEYMARK.
Since 2015, the empowerment of certification bodies, the administration of the KEYMARK and the management on behalf of CEN is assumed by DIN CERTCO.
More and more European certification bodies are interested in granting the European quality mark KEYMARK for products and services based on European Standards and to provide the respective certification service. Since mid 2015, the empowerment of new certification bodies for granting the KEYMARK is done by a KEYMARK Management Organisation (KMO) on behalf of CEN.
The way to KEYMARK Empowerment
The application for empowerment for granting the KEYMARK has to be sent in writing or as PDF by the certification body to DIN CERTCO. On behalf of CEN, DIN CERTCO will assess the provided application documents and evaluate if the requirements for empowerment are fulfilled. .
The proof of competence is done according to the CEN-CENELEC Internal Regulations, Part 4 "Certification" and is based on:
- a valid accreditation according to EN ISO/IEC 17065 and the applied scope
- appropriate experience as certification body
- the testing laboratories accredited according to EN ISO/IEC 17025 sub-contracted by the certification body
- if applicable, the evaluation of the respective certification scheme of the certification body if it is in conflict with the CEN-CENELEC Internal Regulations
If the result of the assessment is positive, a licence agreement is concluded and the certification body receives a corresponding certificate of empowerment. Together with the certificate of empowerment, the certification body will get an Identification No. (ID) which has to be used in conjunction with the granted KEYMARK.
The empowerment is unlimited valid as long as the certification body fulfills the requirements of the licence agreement and can furthermore show that they are still accredited for the respected scope as required.
Frequently asked questions
- Application form KEYMARK Empowerment (DOCX, 87 KB)
- CEN CENELEC – Internal Regulations Part 4 – Certification (THE KEYMARK SYSTEM) (PDF, 459 KB)
- CEN KEYMARK brochure (PDF, 373 KB)
- DIN CERTCO KEYMARK Brochure (PDF, 445 KB)
Heat Pump KEYMARK is out!
As already successfully practiced for solar thermal products (Solar KEYMARK), different European certification bodies together with the European Heat Pump Association (EHPA) developed a European KEYMARK certification scheme for heat pumps. The product range, using the KEYMARK as a European quality mark for promoting, will be succeeded with an important product. Tested and certified once, accepted everywhere!
The new certification scheme for the Heat Pump KEYMARK has been approved by DIN CERTCO on behalf of CEN to fulfil the requirements of the CEN Internal Regulations, Part 4.
European certification bodies are invited to apply for Empowerment, and manufacturers of heat pumps for KEYMARK certification.