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PCR definition and classification

Structure of UN CPC

PCR definition and classification

The product category covered by a PCR shall as far as possible relate to the function of the product, according to ISO 14025. In order to define the scope of the PCR the International EPD® System uses the latest version of the classification scheme UN CPC (Central Product Classification) developed by the United Nations. The classification scheme provides a stringent definition of the PCR-documents within the International EPD® System and also the possibility to give specific guidance for developing PCRs within different groups of products.

The PCR document shall as far as possible be classified with one or more CPC-codes at three, four or five digit level. In some cases it might be justified to deviate from the normal methodology for PCR definition described in the General Programme Instructions, for example when the PCR needs to cover products classified by a broad range of CPC codes in different CPC divisions. In such a case the PCR must be defined by another methodology, for example using the functional unit. The Technical Committee can give further guidance on the PCR definition. Even if the PCR does not follow the CPC structure, the relevant PCR Basic Modules can be used for the PCR development.

If relevant, the PCR can also refer to other classification schemes as additional information like the CPV (Common Procurement Vocabulary) nomenclature for public procurement, United Nations Standard Products and Services Code® (UNSPSC), Classification of Products by Activity (CPA) or Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC).