What Is It With Our Love Of Acronyms?!

I’m sure some of you are familiar with texting acronyms such as: ILY, TTYL, LOL, OBV, BRB, G2G… but do you know what GHS means? No it doesn’t mean “Good Hearted Soul,” but it could. The acronym we’re talking about refers to the “Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals.” This is a rather new international program set up to standardize the classification and labeling of all chemicals.

There are many components to a GHS label providing critical data. This information comes directly from SDS (formerly called MSDS) documents. (Yes, SDS is yet another acronym; it stands for “Safety Data Sheet.” Old MSDS documents were called Material Safety Data Sheets.) The new SDS contain the following elements:

Product Identifier which relays the chemical name and/or product number

Pictograms which convey specific information about the hazards of the chemical

Supplier Information which provides the name, address, and phone number of the chemical manufacturer, importer, or other responsible party.

Signal Word like “WARNING” or “DANGER” which alerts the hazard level of severity

Hazard Statement which describes the nature of hazard(s) associated with the chemical

Precautionary Statement which imparts the recommended steps to prevent adverse effects

First Aid Statement which contains the emergency care information

GHS SymbolsPhew! That’s A LOT of information, but DID YOU KNOW we offer label printing software called BarTender® which makes GHS labeling as easy as paint-by-number kits? Every edition of Bartender® comes with new GHS templates, including pictogram symbols and built-in rules to help populate details automatically. All you will have to do is translate the data from your SDS data into .txt, .csv or .xls format.

For customers with many different chemicals to label, we suggest using BarTender® Automation (or higher) that come with a GHS sample document containing custom scripting features and automatic resizing. If you only need to print a few GHS formats, BarTender® Professional should be sufficient and EIM can help you step through the process.

Just ask our Label Experts for more information on the user-friendly GHS templates, or the user-friendly program which will allow YOU to design your OWN templates! We promise, both options are incredibly easy to use and/or follow! TTYL!

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