UNFPA shaping market regulations for menstrual hygiene

09 Mar 2021

In 2020, UNFPA, UNICEF, and UNHCR introduced first-time quality standards in the market for key menstrual hygiene supplies.

The agencies jointly prepared technical specifications for three menstrual hygiene management (MHM) products: reusable menstrual cups, reusable menstrual pads, and disposable menstrual pads.

The specifications were developed following a market survey and analysis of the information collected from manufacturers, conducted by UNFPA and UNICEF. The specifications developed are informing a new joint tender, which both agencies are issuing for sourcing these products under global long-term agreements.

The specifications were developed within the framework of the MHM in Emergencies Working Group, co-facilitated by UNFPA and UNHCR. Through this group UNFPA, UNICEF and UNHCR were able to solicit feedback on the technical specifications from other humanitarian actors working on MHM in emergencies. This work is in line with UNFPA and UNHCR’s joint Global Refugee Forum commitment to increase coordination on MHM in emergencies. 

The specifications will also be shared with other development and humanitarian actors to ensure increased safety and quality, consistency in product standards, and push towards standardization and product regulations worldwide.

This collaboration is a strong sign of commitment to continue to deliver products of common interest while creating increased value and higher impact.

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