Home Product Certification Standards and Protocols

  • Overview
  • Standards/Protocols
  • Why Work With NSF?
  • Protocol Process

NSF offers several home product evaluation protocols that fall under the NSF Home Product Certification Program™. Other related protocols and standards cover large kitchen appliances.

The Home Product Certification Program protocols cover mandatory regulatory requirements (U.S./Canada/Mexico/EU) for material safety and labeling as well as standards for verifying product performance and quality. Test methods verify durability and functionality, and analytical tests confirm the absence of harmful substances in products that contact food.

Standards and protocols can provide credibility and industry acceptance for new products or emerging technologies. To find out more about developing standards or protocols for home products or other industries, call +1 734-913-5774 or email standards@nsf.org.

For standard development or revision status, visit the NSF Online Workspace. Get involved with NSF standards and protocol development by joining a Joint Committee. The NSF Standards Department is seeking experts to serve on various NSF joint committees. Learn more.

To purchase standards, visit the NSF Bookstore website.

Standards/Protocols

Current NSF Home Product Certification Program protocols cover:

NSF Protocol P386: Food Storage Containers for Home Use

NSF P386 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of food storage containers intended for sale in the retail consumer market. Containers can be made of one or more of these materials: glass, ceramic, metal, plastic and rubber.


NSF Protocol P387: Coffee Makers for Home Use

NSF P387 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of coffee makers intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes electrical (drip and pour-over) and non-electrical (French press) coffee makers as well as espresso and cappuccino machines. The protocol also establishes minimum packaging and labeling requirements.


NSF Protocol P388: Blenders for Home Use

NSF P388 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of electrical countertop blenders intended for sale in the retail consumer market. In addition, the protocol establishes minimum packaging and labeling requirements.


NSF Protocol P389: Slow Cooker and Rice Cooker Appliances for Home Use

NSF P389 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of countertop electrical slow cookers and rice cookers intended for sale in the retail consumer market. The protocol also establishes minimum packaging and labeling requirements.


NSF Protocol P390: Stovetop Cookware for Home Use

NSF390 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of stovetop cookware intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes metal cookware, sauté pans, skillets, griddles, grill pans and non-stick cookware.


NSF Protocol P392: Tableware for Home Use

NSF 392 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of tableware intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes plates, saucers, bowls, cups, glasses, tumblers, butter dishes, gravy bowls and similar items, regardless of size or configuration, from which food is directly or indirectly consumed. Tableware can be made of one or more of these materials: ceramic, glass, metal, plastic and wood.


NSF Protocol P393: Oven Bakeware for Home Use

NSF P393 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of oven bakeware intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes cake pans, pie pans, casserole dishes, cookie sheets, bread pans, pizza pans, muffin pans, roasting pans, Dutch pans and broiler pans. Bakeware can be made of one or more of these materials: glass, ceramic (stoneware and earthenware), silicone and metal.


NSF Protocol P395: Personal Beverage Containers for Home Use

NSF P395 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of personal beverage containers intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes travel mugs or cups, reusable beverage containers, sippy cups, water or sport bottles, and thermoses or flasks. Containers can be made of one or more of these materials: glass, ceramic, metal, plastic and rubber.


NSF Protocol P396: Electrically Heated Serving Ware for Home Use

NSF P396 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of electrically heated serving ware intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes buffet warmers and trays, fondue pots and serving trays.


NSF Protocol P399: Cutlery and Flatware for Home Use

NSF P399 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of cutlery and flatware items intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes butter knives, steak knives, spoons, forks and similar items, regardless of size or configuration, from which food is directly or indirectly consumed. Items can be made of one or more of these materials: metal, plastic, silicone and wood.


NSF Protocol P400: Food Contact Utensils for Home Use

NSF P400 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of utensils used to prepare and serve food in the home. This includes cutting boards, graters, ladles, measuring cups, spatulas, whisks, can openers, melon scoopers, bagel cutters, garlic presses and similar items, regardless of size or configuration, from which food is served or consumed. Utensils can be made from one or more of these materials: glass, metal, natural fiber, plastic, silicone and wood.


NSF Protocol P402: Vacuum Packaging Systems, Bags and Canisters for Home Use

NSF P402 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of vacuum packaging systems, bags and canisters intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes heat seal and hand-held vacuum packaging systems as well as heat seal bags, seal canisters and zipper seal bags for vacuum packaging systems. The protocol also establishes minimum packaging and labeling requirements.


NSF Protocol P403: Corded Home Textiles – Heated Blankets, Pads and Mattress Pads for Home Use

NSF P403 establishes minimum safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of heated blankets, pads and mattress pads intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes electrically heated blankets, throws, quilts and comforters as well as electrically heated pads and mattress pads. The protocol also establishes minimum packaging and labeling requirements.


NSF Protocol P406 - Clothes Irons and Garment Steamers for Home Use

NSF P406 establishes minimum safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of clothes irons and garment steamers intended for sale in the retail consumer market. Items can be made of one or more of these materials: stainless steel, composite wood, chrome plating, rubber, glass, metal and plastic.


NSF Protocol P407: Fans for Home Use

NSF P407 establishes minimum protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of electric fans intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes box, tabletop, blower and pedestal fans. Fans can be made of one or more of these materials: metal, plastic, wood, ceramic and natural or synthetic fiber.


NSF Protocol P408: Barware and Accessories for Home Use

NSF P408 establishes minimum food protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of barware and accessories for use in preparing and serving beverages in the home. This includes cocktail shakers, strainers, ice buckets and scoops, bottle openers, wine utensils, serving trays and other barware utensils that contact food or drinks directly or indirectly. Items can be made of one or more of these materials: glass, ceramic, metal, plastic, silicone, natural fiber and wood.


NSF Protocol P412: Space Heaters for Home Use

NSF P412 establishes minimum protection and safety requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of electric space heaters intended for sale in the retail consumer market. This includes quartz, liquid-filled, ceramic and fan-forced space heaters. Heaters can consist of one or more of these materials: metal, plastic, wood, glass and ceramic.


Other protocols:

NSF Protocol P154: Sanitization Performance of Residential Clothes Dryers

NSF P154 establishes minimum performance requirements for residential clothes dryers to demonstrate their ability to sanitize washed laundry when dried on the unit’s sanitation cycle. The protocol also confirms there is no significant carryover of bacteria or contamination into future dryer loads.


NSF Protocol P172: Sanitization Performance of Residential and Commercial, Family-Sized Clothes Washers

NSF P172 establishes minimum performance requirements for washing machines to demonstrate their ability to reduce 99.9 percent of microorganisms when clothing is washed on the unit’s sanitization cycle. The protocol also confirms there is no significant carryover of bacteria or contamination into future washer loads.


NSF Protocol P351: Allergen Reduction Performance of Residential and Commercial, Family-Sized Clothes Washers

NSF P351 establishes requirements for washing machines to demonstrate their ability to kill dust mites and wash away a minimum of 95 percent of pet (feline) dander and dust mite allergens. Washers must sustain a wash water temperature of 55° Celsius (131° Fahrenheit) for at least three minutes, be designed to avoid accumulation of dirt and debris, and be easily cleanable and corrosion-resistant. Manufacturers certifying products to P351 may also choose to certify removal claims for canine dander, cockroach allergens and birch pollen.


Related standard:

NSF/ANSI Standard 184: Residential Dishwashers

NSF/ANSI 184 establishes minimum public health and sanitation requirements for the materials, design, construction and performance of residential dishwashing equipment and related components. Sanitation cycles of certified residential dishwashers must achieve a minimum 99.999 percent or 5-log reduction of bacteria and reach a final rinse temperature of 150° F.


To purchase standards or protocols, visit the NSF Bookstore website.

To learn more about the program, visit Home Product Certification.

Why Work With NSF?

The NSF Home Product Certification Program builds on our unparalleled expertise in national standards and protocol development, testing and certification. We developed the first standards for commercial foodservice equipment in 1944 and have since developed more than 75 American National Standards and over 30 protocols for a wide range of commercial and consumer products.

Protocol Process

Like NSF standards, NSF protocols are requirements used as a basis of certification, developed through a collaborative process involving a technical panel including the product manufacturer, regulators, academicians, end users and public health experts. At the preference of the manufacturer, unlike with standards, the protocol development phase can be confidential, protecting your proprietary interests. Protocols may also be developed from industry best practice documents or other guidelines that require a more stringent process for validation.

Protocols can be performance-based, as is the case for home products protocols, or sustainability-based or both. Protocols may be pass/fail or have levels of achievement like sustainability assessment standards. NSF protocols are not American National Standards, nor are they affiliated with ANSI. Existing protocols can however be developed into ANSI standards by following the ANSI consensus-based process.

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  • Open How does NSF’s home product certification (HPC) differ from commercial food equipment certification?

    NSF’s Home Product Certification Program was designed for consumer products that undergo retail testing, and the NSF protocol requirements focus on quality concerns and regulations specific to the consumer goods market. The Home Product Certification Program is based on, but separate from, the NSF Commercial Food Equipment Program which validates the cleanability, material safety, temperature performance and other critical characteristics of food equipment used in restaurants, supermarkets, cafeterias, schools and other food service establishments. Commercial foodservice equipment certified to NSF/ANSI standards satisfies requirements in the FDA Food Code. Certified home products are tested for product quality, performance and food contact material regulations.

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