The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has sharply increased demand for disinfectants and has kept the demand high. Some manufacturers of cosmetics, household cleaning agents and disinfectants or classic drugs have recognized the possibility of a new business area in this situation during the past 1 1⁄2 years: manufacturing hand sanitizers.
The number of hand sanitizer products has therefore increased explosively since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
The sales market for these products is mainly in regions and countries where most people can afford high hygiene standards and manufacturers can expect large profit margins, such as in the European Union and the United States. This goes along with the high legal and regulatory requirements that apply in those countries.
In Europe, hand sanitizers are either considered biocidal products and must be approved before being placed on the market in the EU in accordance with the Regulation on the making available on the market and use of biocidal products (EU) No. 528/2012, "Biocide Regulation" in short, or are subject to approval as drugs. In the United States, the requirements and specifications for approval are defined in the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FD&CAct).
A product labeled as a hand sanitizer, possibly with the specific claim to rendering inactive the SARS-CoV-2 virus (pathogen of Covid-19), has legal consequences and may prove to be an economic success killer in the event of non-compliance with the applicable regulatory and legal requirements.
This issue is explained below with a focus on the U.S. market.