My Children. My Opinions. My Tales.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Shame, shame I know your name!

Yes, China has now been pinpointed as the culprit behind one of the largest toy recalls in history. Today, Fisher Price announced nearly 1 million toys would be recalled due to high levels of lead found in the decorative paint. The toys affected are mostly Elmo and Dora, the most popular figures in many toddler households...and day cares.



Unfortunately, my daughter has been bathing with one of the recalled toys.



This is a huge disappointment to America. If other countries are unable to meet our standards, the answer is plain and simple - don't use them.

Fisher Price has a huge PR nightmare on their hands. It takes years to build the kind of trust they once owned. As a parent I am going to be hesitant buying my little jelly bean her favorite Elmo toy, even if she begs, pleads and whines...If it is made in China, I ain't buying it.

9 comments:

Jill said...

Wow. What a shame. :-( :-( :-(

Bastet said...

Isn't it? I really wish there was a practical solution. My husband who works for the Health Department said that lead can cause many adverse health problems, this could be the reason why we are seeing more cases of children with cancer.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I saw your post on the GoodyBlog "Toy Scare", I got there from Parents website. I thought you might be interested in what I found.

In light of the recent massive toy recall, I decided to get a do-it-yourself lead test kit so that I might test a few of my sons favorite toys to see if they posed any danger from lead based paint. One of the toys is Parent's peek-a-zoo, which consists of painted blocks (which the paint chips off of easily) and a box with painted doors and holes where he can put the right shaped block into. I tested one of the blocks for lead paint and the test result was positive. With that info I went onto Parents website and found the "Toy Scare" blog. I posted what I found there at ~12:30pm this afternoon, at ~2pm my post was gone, apparently deleted from the blog. If my test results are correct I feel the peek-a-zoo poses a potential health risk to children especially considering the size of the blocks and the tendency for the paint to easily chip off. It would be great if anyone out there could confirm my result.

Regards,
- Todd

Bastet said...

Thanks for the comment Todd. I haven't heard anything about the peek-a-zoo, but will try to dig deeper.

What I do know, the self lead test are not always accurate...great huh?!

My recommendation is to contact the CPSC and report your findings. They have a specific area for cases like that. http://www.cpsc.gov/talk.html

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the recommendation, I'll do that. I'll check back periodically to see if you've found anything.

Thanks,
- Todd

Anonymous said...

Here's the response I received from Parents (I can't imagine that Fisher Price doesn't have a similar policy). I'll give Battat a call today. Regards.

Hello Todd,

Your email was directed to me since I am the account director for the line of Parents products and work closely with our manufacturers. I wanted to respond to your question and provide other information which you may find useful.

Our toys are made by Battat, Incorporated, who does use manufacturing facilities in China. I wanted to share with you that all of our toys are tested against US standards for safety and toxins like lead and phthalates. Battat has met or exceeded the established standards.
Parents(R) also conducts additional random testing with independent laboratories to re-check the results.

For your information, the CPSC doesn't recommend that consumers use over-the-counter lead testing kits. They are unreliable and can give false positive results and false negative results.

Instead, before you buy a product, contact the retailer or manufacturer.
Ask if they have tested the product for lead or have a no-lead policy.
If you don't get a satisfactory answer, don't buy it.

In addition, the CPSC encourages consumers to sign up to receive future recall announcements via email. Consumers can sign up at www.cpsc.gov http://www.cpsc.gov and can even choose a category about which they'd like to be notified, for instance "infant/child products." They will be notified directly by CPSC when a recall is announced.

Also, parents should take an inventory of the toys and other products in their house. Check it against any recalls already announced by CPSC at www.cpsc.gov http://www.cpsc.gov.

Our toy maker, Battat, does have a no-lead policy. Their toll free customer service number is 800-247-6144, if you have other specific questions on this important topic. I will give Battat a copy of your message and this reply as well.

Thank you for writing us at support@parents.com, and I hope this has been of some assistance. Best regards,

Sondra Newkirk
Account Director, Brand Licensing
Meredith Corporation

Bastet said...

I am glad that Parents responded promptly to your concern, please update me when you hear more from the manufacturer.

Thanks again for the heads up!

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I was finally was able to call Battat customer service. I was told that the "peek-a-zoo" is manufactured in China and that their engineering department quality checks for lead, she wasn't sure what the percentage of toys is that get tested. She is going to send an email to engineering telling them what I found. She did say that a test result with <=.06% lead meets their standards. I'm not sure what that means as far as the amount of lead present, but I think any lead is too much, especially if it's cumulative. Just wanted to keep you posted as promised. I'll let you know what their engineering dept. says if they get back to me.
Regards,
- Todd

Bastet said...

That is really interesting. You are right, any amount of lead is too much!