Shoppers reminded to look for the 'CE' safety mark this Christmas

The symbol means products have passed safety standards

Shoppers reminded to look for the 'CE' safety mark this Christmas

Image: European Commission

The National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) is advising Christmas shoppers to keep an eye out for the CE quality mark.

It comes as one of the biggest shopping days of Christmas, December 8th, gets underway.

This mark, which stand for Conformité Europeenne, is put on electrical products or toys when the product complies with all safety standards.

A new survey reveals almost half of people do not recognise a genuine CE mark.

The online study of 984 people, conducted by NSAI, found that 49% did not recognise the real mark when placed side-by-side with a fake one.

While 10% of respondents said that they never look for the mark when purchasing toys or electrical products.

There are a number of indicators that the CE mark is genuine.

Look carefully at the three branches of the letter 'E'. The central one should be shorter. Also, look for the space between the 'C' and the 'E' - it should be quite big.

Image: NSAI

CEO of the NSAI, Maurice Buckley, said: "From Christmas fairy lights, to tablets or mobile phones; electrical products and toys make up the majority of our Christmas shopping lists and therefore it's vital you ensure what you are buying is safe and complies with safety standards.

"By law, all toys and electrical products for sale in Ireland must display the CE safety mark. The CE mark is the manufacturer's declaration that the product complies with safety standards and it must be visible on the product itself or on its packaging."

The mark shows a product has undergone safety testing in the design and manufacture process.

Mr Buckley continued: "Most of the products and services we encounter every day are governed by standards.

"But unfortunately, due to counterfeiting or the misuse of the CE mark, there is never a 100% guarantee that a product bearing the mark is safe.

"That's why NSAI is advising consumers to familiarise yourself with the CE mark and always buy products from trustworthy shops and online outlets," he added.

Could you tell the difference?