Content By Underwriters Laboratories UL

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By: Underwriters Laboratories UL

Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a global safety science company, has released its annual global survey on manufacturers’ and consumers’ perceptions of products, whether they are making and selling them or buying and consuming them. Here are some of the key findings from this report.

Optimism gives way to realism

A significant difference from last year’s mindset is the evolution from positivity and confidence to pragmatism and realism. In 2011, the product mindset revealed that manufacturers were certain about their performance, while consumers were optimistic about product quality. In 2012, we’ve seen both groups shift to a more realistic attitude.
• 87 percent of manufacturers agree that government regulations are increasingly stringent.
• 90 percent of manufacturers are convinced that innovation is becoming more important.
• 75 percent of manufacturers think that consumers are more concerned about the ethical and fair treatment of workers at all levels of the supply chain.
• 42 percent of consumers strongly believe that manufacturers need to improve product quality.

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By: Underwriters Laboratories UL

(UL: Northbrook, IL) -- UL Knowledge Services, a business unit of Underwriters Laboratory (UL) and an authorized educational partner of The Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence, is offering a two-day workshop on the Shingo model and the principles behind the Shingo Prize philosophy and approach. The workshop, “Principles of Operational Excellence and Assessment,” will be held June 12–14, 2012, at the UL facility in Northbrook, Illinois.

This two-day workshop will help participants reach an understanding of the Shingo model and the underlying principles behind The Shingo Prize philosophy and approach. Participants will learn and gain experience in aligning their organizational principles and core values with their systems. There will be group activities that help develop skills in assessing alignment and addressing misalignments by embedding principles into work and management systems.

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By: Underwriters Laboratories UL

(UL: Northbrook, IL) -- UL Environment, a business unit of Underwriters Laboratories (UL), has launched of a free web-based tool that will help manufacturers assess their corporate sustainability efforts. Part of UL Environment’s Sustainability Quotient (SQ) Program, this tool provides manufacturers with a preliminary analysis of their sustainability initiatives relative to the requirements of the UL 880 standard. The tool also aggregates responses from all survey respondents and provides an overall benchmark of sustainability progress to date.

“Manufacturers are making great strides when it comes to their own sustainability programs, and this assessment tool will help them identify gaps in standards they are currently using,” says Gary Savin, vice president of UL Environment. “By using this tool, companies will be able to get a sense of their organization’s environmental, social, and governance performance, ideally acting as incentive for further innovation.”

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(UL: Los Angeles) -- UL Responsible Sourcing of Underwriter Laboratories (UL), a global provider of corporate responsibility auditing and ethical sourcing consulting services, has introduced its corrective and preventive action (CAPA) system to help manage and track improvements in manufacturing processes and responsible workplace systems throughout the supply chain.

The CAPA system is an online workflow management tool that helps companies communicate workplace improvements to their business partners, educate staff and suppliers about workplace systems, track and document the closure of audit findings, and streamline management of the corrective action process.

“Our new online CAPA system has been designed to facilitate collaborative problem solving between global brands, their vendors, and manufacturing sites,” says Ryan Lynch, project manager, UL Responsible Sourcing. “The tool addresses managing a huge number of complex, site-specific workplace challenges within large-scale, supply-chain risk management programs.”

By making data centralized and easily viewable, providing real-time status reports, and keeping corrective actions on track, the CAPA system is designed to help companies positively influence the integrity of their supply chains.

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(UL: Camas, WA) -- Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL), a world leader in advancing safety, has announced the execution of a definitive agreement whereby UL will acquire the quality assurance business of STR Holdings Inc., an Enfield, Connecticut-based company. The acquisition is part of UL’s strategy to expand its offerings to global retailing and manufacturing customers. STR’s quality assurance business is a leading global provider of testing, inspection, auditing, and responsible sourcing capabilities exclusively focused on consumer products. UL will pay an estimated $275 million in cash for STR’s quality assurance business.

“The acquisition of STR’s quality assurance business will be a major milestone for UL as we continue to significantly expand our business and the services we can offer our customers,” says Keith Williams, president and CEO of UL. “STR’s quality assurance business has unparalleled global depth and breadth in the consumer products sector. Through this acquisition and other strategic actions, we strive to become the company that manufacturers and retailers turn to for their consumer product quality assurance and responsible sourcing needs around the globe.”

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(UL: Northbrook, IL) --  Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a world provider of product safety testing and certification, has released an extensive resource, “UL’s Comprehensive 60601 3rd edition Q&A” that addresses more than 70 frequently asked questions (FAQ) regarding IEC 60601 third edition, which includes the latest revisions to the internationally harmonized safety standard for electro-medical equipment.

The FAQ document now available was designed to help industry address impending 2012 European and Canadian deadlines. Manufacturers selling medical devices in the European Union (EU) and Canada have until June 2012 to demonstrate conformity to the third edition of the standard.

As the typical design cycle for a medical device ranges from six to 18 months, manufacturers need to begin the process as soon as possible and consider the effect to their production cycles and distribution chain. Earlier this year, the U.S. Food and Drug Admnistration announced that it will also require conformity to the third edition by July 2013 for products sold in the United States.

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(UL: Northbrook, IL) -- Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a global provider of safety testing and certification, was recently named the exclusive nationally recognized testing laboratory for The EV Project, a groundbreaking study of electric vehicle (EV) charging station infrastructure. The company signed a memorandum of understanding with Electric Transportation Engineering Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of ECOtality Inc., to test and certify eTec’s vehicle charging stations that will be used in the project. UL joins eTec, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and more than 40 other partners embarking on the largest deployment of electric vehicles and charge infrastructure in history.  

The EV Project began in October 2009 when ECOtality’s eTec was awarded a federal stimulus grant of nearly $100 million from the DOE, and will deploy 4,700 zero-emissions vehicles, the Nissan LEAF, for the three-year study. The vehicles will be powered by 11,210 UL-listed charging stations in homes, and in commercial and public locations in five U.S. states: Arizona (Phoenix and Tucson), Washington (Seattle), Oregon (Portland, Salem, Corvallis, and Eugene), California (San Diego) and Tennessee (Chattanooga, Knoxville, and Nashville). 

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(UL: Warrington, UK) --  Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL), a provider of product safety testing and certification services, recently announced that UL International (UK) Ltd., a notified body to the construction products directive, has signed an agreement with SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden. The agreement with SP allows UL UK and UL’s family of companies to expand its European testing capabilities and bolsters both its CE marking services and global market access.

The alliance with SP expands UL’s current capabilities to test and certify to a wider range of European standards. Specifically, UL UK, as a notified body to the construction products directive, will utilize SP’s test facilities for testing to a variety of EN and ETAG standards in the areas of fire resistance, and fire alarm and detection covered within UL UK’s scope of services. 

Following successful testing, as part of the attestation process, UL UK can issue the CE certificate of compliance, needed by manufacturers for their products to bear the CE marking. 

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By: Underwriters Laboratories UL

(Underwriters Laboratories: Northbrook, IL) -- Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a provider in product safety and conformity testing and certification services, announces that UL International (UK) Ltd. (UL UK) has been appointed as a notified body to the Construction Products Directive (CPD). UL UK is now notified as a certification and inspection organization for fire detection and alarm equipment, and fire resistance products and systems. The company can now offer CE marking services within the scope of the CPD alongside the already well-established UL Mark. 

“UL and UL UK are very proud to achieve this designation and are excited about what it means for our valued customers,” says Marco Crosignani, head of the notified body. “Our new service offerings will help expand our already growing certification business in Europe while enhancing overall global market access for UL customers.” 

As a CPD notified body, UL UK can test products to applicable European standards (ENs) and European technical approvals (ETAGs), utilizing UL’s network of state-of-the-art test facilities, and issue a CE Certificate of Conformity. The CE Certificate of Conformity is mandatory for fire safety products and systems marketed in Europe to demonstrate compliance with relevant CPD requirements. 

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By: Underwriters Laboratories UL

(UL: Northbrook, IL) -- Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL), a world leader in product safety testing and certification services, announces that it has acquired Compliance Certification Services (CCS) of Fremont, California. The acquisition results in a newly formed division at UL and bolsters its electromagnetic compliance (EMC) testing capabilities and global market access.

CCS, now known as UL CCS, an independent EMC and wireless testing organization, primarily serves U.S., Taiwanese, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese manufacturers. The acquisition provides UL with the capabilities to test and certify to a wider range of standards, including the FCC in the United States, the CE in Europe, the MIC in Japan, the IC in Canada, the IDA in Singapore, the NCC/BSMI in Taiwan, and the KCC in Korea.

“UL’s mission is to advance public safety worldwide, and the acquisition of UL CCS grows our EMC and wireless testing and certification capabilities locally and globally,” says Keith Williams, UL’s president and CEO. “Additionally, the UL CCS team’s innovative and specialized testing services advance our leadership in certification and enable us to provide better service and more options for our customers.”