Australian standards set out specifications and design procedures for goods, services and systems.

These standards help to make sure products and services:

  • are safe and reliable
  • perform the way they're intended to. 

Types of standards

There are 2 types of standards: mandatory and voluntary.

Mandatory standards

Mandatory standards apply to certain products by law. The standards can relate to:

  • performance
  • composition
  • contents
  • methods of manufacture or processing
  • design
  • construction
  • finish
  • packaging or labelling.

Mandatory standards are developed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

The ACCC has a list of current mandatory standards and the products and processes they apply to. These products must meet safety criteria before they are sold in Australia. 

There are penalties for supplying products that don't follow these standards. 

Voluntary standards

Voluntary standards generally represent best practice but they are not a legal requirement. It is legal to supply products that do not meet voluntary standards.

You can search for and buy voluntary standards online at:

How to submit a recall

When a product may be unsafe, you must remove the risk to public safety as quickly as possible. This means:

  • removing the product from sale
  • contacting consumers, and 
  • publicly offering to repair, replace or refund the product.

As a supplier, you are responsible for telling the ACCC if you need to recall a product for safety reasons. This applies to anyone in the supply chain – manufacturer, importer, distributor or retailer.

You must tell the ACCC about a product recall within 2 days of starting recall action. 

Learn more about product recalls.

More information

The ACCC develops standards in consultation with industry and the public. You can have your say on and view consultations about standards on their website.

Last updated: 23 February 2024

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