Despite the negative consequences of COVID-19, standards have proven key to protecting and supporting society in an emergency situation and can do so in the new normal ahead. From face masks to respirators, and accessibility of communication, we have all learnt the importance of standards in ensuring our safety and wellbeing.

In 2019, more than 2,000 notifications of non-food products were made to the EU’s rapid alert system (Safety Gate) as failing safety requirements. Each notification may represent thousands of faulty products. Toys, motor vehicles and electrical appliances were the product groups with most notifications. The figure could well be an undercount, as many dangerous products are possibly not identified.