Wal-Mart and Toys-R-Us try to self regulate under the specter of new federal regulation of the toy industry...
Posted Sep 13 2008 11:53pm
Toys-R-Us and Wal-Mart, the big sources of Chinese-made toys that were rocked by the recalls over the past year, are trying now to set standards for their suppliers.
With a shaky economy and nervous parents, they should have done this sooner, better yet, stop being reactive and be a little proactive, quite a novel concept.
These self-imposed standards in theory, will meet or exceed standards the toy industry is expecting from the federal government soon. Chemicals like phthalates from PVC, and a reduction of the lead content in toys (from the current acccepted level of lead on surface coatings is 600 parts per million to 90 parts per million; for interior parts of the toys from the current level of 600 parts per million to 250 parts per million).
Why are they even allowing lead in toys, period? I don't get it.
Meanwhile our "leaders" in Congress have woken up and are now in the process of increasing oversight and the budget for the Consumer Product Safety Commission, from $63 million in fiscal year 2007 to a projected $155.9 million by 2015. Even going as far as requiring mandatory independent labotory testing before the toys are sold. Why they didn't require independent testing in the first place is beyond me. It seems to me that government regulation, which I feel in this case was neccesary, was shunned for profit, but has now become a neccesity and a way for the toy industry to attempt to buy back some credibility.
With toys sales dipping by 2% last year and a 5% decrease from October to December alone, they better do more fast, because parents aren't buying it......