EFTTA, the European Trade body for angling, is currently implementing a testing programme through an independently appointed laboratory to determine the accuracy of labelling in monofilament line because a number of lines available on the market have been claiming breaking strengths that are greater than actual breaking strengths.
The tests have been carried out confidentially and under controlled conditions. If this problem continues companies that produce monofilament line will find themselves in the same position as French companies where the consumer protection in France has taken charge of the problem and are handing out fines to companies incorrectly stating breaking strengths. They are however, allowing an acceptable tolerance of 10% variation. Together with GIFAP they established an acceptable variance of ±10%. EFTTA thinks these problems should be solved within the trade following the French standard.

The laboratory has finished testing 58 lines for breaking strength. Each brand of line was subject to 10 tests per diameter. Taking the mean measured breaking strength of the 58 lines that were tested 90% of the lines were below their stated breaking strength.

· 11% (6 lines) of lines tested achieved or were better than their stated breaking strength
· 5% (3 lines) of lines tested had more than 50% less breaking strength than declared
· 36% (21 lines) of lines tested had 30-50% less breaking strength than declared
· 26% (15 lines) of lines had 20-30% less breaking strength than declared
· 22% (13 lines) of lines tested had up to 20% less breaking strength than declared

The EFTTA standard of test is the ISO 2062. Specimens of line were cut to a 500mm length (2 specimens were cut from each of 5 reels) and soaked in tap water at room temperature for 30 minutes. The samples were then removed from the water and the tests were carried out within the hour. The jaws used to secure the sample were set to a gauge of 500mm, the sample then clamped in the jaws at the appropriate pretension and a rate of 500mm/min was used. The line was checked so that slippage and breakage did not occur within 5mm of the jaws. The breaking force and elongation at break was recorded for each sample.

· 83% (48 lines) of the lines had all samples below their stated breaking strength (each sample was subject to 10 tests)
· 9% (6 lines) of the lines had some of the samples below their stated breaking strength (some of the 10 results)
· 8% (4 lines) of samples achieved their stated breaking strength

The results of the tests have been sent to concerned companies before they are made public to give them the opportunity to correct their stated declarations. EFTTA is looking into the procedures involved in setting up an approved quality label and further details will be sent to members before the end of the summer. If you wish to discuss this issue any further please contact Janet Doyle at the EFTTA Secretariat janetdoyle@eftta.com .