Circular Lighting Report

95% of lighting products bought online are non-compliant – survey

LightingEurope mystery shopper founds non compliant lighting products

The European Union must crack down on online suppliers of lighting equipment which doesn’t comply with the standards, the manufacturers’ trade body LightingEurope has declared, after it discovered that 95 per cent of products it purchased failed EU standards. 

The organisation carried out a so-called ‘mystery shopper’ exercise to establish how much non-compliant lighting is sold on online marketplaces into European and UK markets.
It says it demonstrates that non-compliant lighting products are easily accessible online.

LightingEurope says it is calling on EU policymakers to finally address the legal loophole where traders located outside of the EU cannot be held account.

Only an EU-based operation can be held liable for the non-compliance of the products and allocate lability for product safety requirements, such as when a product does not satisfy ecodesign or energy labelling rules or does not contribute to waste recovery and recycling fees.

LightingEurope results

The mystery shopping exercise was carried out over six EU countries and four online marketplaces. Of 150 products inspected, 107 (71 per cent) were found to be non-compliant in their online presentation, and 95 per cent were found to be non-compliant upon delivery. The mystery shoppers carried out visual inspections of the information on the webpage and then ordered and received lighting products and inspected the information on the packaging and on the product itself.

They looked at two product types, GLS replacement lamps (LED 60w A60 E27, most common types) and desktop luminaires with integrated LED lamps.
It bought the times from platforms in the Netherlands, Poland, Germany, Spain, France and Italy.

The mystery shoppers proceeded to the online inspection of the first products that appeared in the search results, following the platforms’ search algorithm, meaning that no geographical distinction was made. This was done so that, to some extent, it was each platforms’ search algorithm that decided what products would be inspected. LightingEurop proceeded to the online inspection of the first 30 products that appeared and ordered the first 10 that failed the online inspection.

• Diary date: Circular Lighting Live 2024, Recolight’s flagship conference and exhibition, takes place on Wednesday 9 October 2024 at the Royal College of Physicians in London. Free to specifiers, Circular Lighting Live 2024 will feature leading experts, specifiers and policy makers who will share their insights into forthcoming standards and legislation, emerging technologies and new business models. More info:

Ray Molony

Recolight Report is an independent guide to the latest developments in sustainable and circular lighting. Learn about the people, products, projects and processes that are shaping our industry’s low carbon future. Plus: explainers on the latest innovations, opinion from thought leaders and video interviews with leading disruptors. Edited by lighting expert, editor and industry figure Ray Molony.