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What is an article?

An article is a finished good that’s produced for a particular purpose - such as an empty glass bottle, a plastic pipe or a piece of fibre board. If you only introduce articles, then you do not need to register with us. However, if you introduce an article that is intentionally designed to release an industrial chemical during use (such as a bottle containing cleaning fluid), then you must register with us.

If the article has been designed to release chemicals

These chemicals have regulatory obligations - meaning that you must register your business with us and you must categorise your introduction of these chemicals.

If the article has not been designed to release chemicals - but chemicals are released anyway

This is an excluded introduction and lower level of regulatory obligations apply - meaning you do not need to register your business with us.

How we define an article

  1. It is produced for use for a particular purpose, being a purpose that requires that the object have a particular shape, surface or design; and
  2. It is formed to that shape, surface or design during production; and
  3. It undergoes no change of chemical composition when used for that purpose except as an intrinsic aspect of that use

Importantly, these objects are not articles:

  • objects that are a piece of matter whose purpose is determined to a lesser degree by the object’s shape, surface or design, compared to the object’s chemical composition. In other words, the object’s chemical composition is more relevant to the function of the object than its shape, surface or design;
  • objects that are wholly fluid - this includes liquid, gas and plasma.

Examples of articles

  • Furniture such as tables and chairs
  • Plastic and wooden toys
  • Books, CDs and DVDs
  • Clothing and shoes
  • Whitegoods and kitchen appliances such as dishwashers, toasters, refrigerators
  • Empty plastic or glass bottles and containers
  • Cookware, crockery and cutlery – bowls, plates, knives, forks, spoons, pots, pans
  • Empty plastic bottles
  • Machined, molded or extruded piece of material used for carrying fluids, supporting a mass, providing a barrier etc.
  • A piece of mechanical gearing
  • A closed cell battery
  • A piece of plant or heavy machinery that does not intentionally emit industrial chemicals

Examples that are not articles

  • Ballpoint pens, permanent markers and whiteboard markers
  • Shampoo, conditioner, skin lotion soap perfume and other cosmetic products (both packaged and unpackaged)
  • Cleaning products (both domestic and commercial) such as detergent, soap, bleach and window cleaning fluids
  • Spray cans and tins of paint
  • Engine oil and coolants
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Wax crayons
  • Baby wipes
  • Bottle of cosmetics
  • Ink cartridge filled with ink
  • Glue sticks

Decision tool - Is my object an article?

Is the object produced for use for a particular purpose, being a purpose that requires that the object have a particular shape/surface/design?

Is the object formed to that shape, surface or design during production?

Does the object undergo change of chemical composition when used for that purpose?

Is the change of chemical composition an intrinsic aspect of that use?

Is the object wholly fluid?

Is the shape, surface or design more relevant for the purpose of the object than its chemical composition?

Based on the information provided, your object is an article.

Does the article have an industrial use?

Does your article release chemicals, either by design or unintentionally?

Does your article release chemicals by design?

Your object is not an article.

You don't need to register with us to introduce your article.

You do need to register with us and categorise the introduction of any chemicals your article releases.

Any chemicals your article releases are excluded introductions. You don't need to register with us, but you do have obligations under the IC Act.

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