Research Highlights that 30% of the Toy Manufacturers and Distributors are Unsure of the Impacts of the Toy Safety Directive

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Research from Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Services UK, one of the worlds leading Supply Chain Quality, Risk and Social Responsibility solution providers, has found that more than 30% of companies manufacturing, importing or distributing toys in Europe are still unsure of the impacts of the revised Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC on their operations. Toy professionals are not left with a lot of time to comply since the Directive will come into force on the 20th July 2011 (and on the 20th July 2013 for the section regulating the use of chemicals in toys).

What does the revised Toy Safety Directive mean to businesses?

The research we’ve conducted amongst our customers shows that a substantial number of toy professionals are not yet comfortable with the revised Toy Safety Directive. This is not a real surprise knowing that the Directive brings a lot of crucial changes.

Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Services UK, one of the worlds leading Supply Chain Quality, Risk and Social Responsibility solution providers, has recently conducted research amongst its customer database (manufacturers, importers and distributors) to understand how they are managing the latest changes in toy regulations. The research, completed in December 2009, showed that more than 30% of the respondents were not totally sure of the impacts of the revised Toy Safety Directive on their business and operations.

The Toy Safety Directive 2009/48/EC, which replaces the 20-year old 88/378/EEC Directive, will come into application on the 20th July 2011 (and on the 20th July 2013 for the section regulating the use of chemicals in toys). This updated regulation, applying to all toys manufactured and distributed within the European Union, implies a long series of changes for manufacturers and distributors including: the requirement to conduct a risk/hazard assessment, the obligation to provide an EC declaration of conformity, the ban of new compounds & substances and additional restrictions on toys sold with food.

Because toys are produced and traded months ahead of Christmas, manufacturers do not have so much time left to comply with the new Directive and it is therefore worrying to see that 30% of the toy professionals are not totally sure what to do in order to meet the terms of the new legislation. Complying with the Directive is mandatory and the consequences of distributing unsafe toys in the European market could result in very expensive product recalls, risks of liability, brand damage and loss of customer’s confidence.

To help manufacturers, importers and retailers understand and comply with the new Toy Safety Directive, Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Services has enhanced its global toy supply chain services which include: consultancy packages, product safety testing, safety/risk assessments, product design evaluations, production controls, factory assessments and documentation reviews.

Malcolm Horner, Technical Consultant at Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Services, comments: “The research we’ve conducted amongst our customers shows that a substantial number of toy professionals are not yet comfortable with the revised Toy Safety Directive. This is not a real surprise knowing that the Directive brings a lot of crucial changes and, ultimately, many interpretational questions are being asked.”

“Bureau Veritas’ toy technical consultants are definitely well-placed to help manufacturers, importers and distributors deal with these regulatory changes and interpretational issues: we have experts sitting at the BSI Toy Safety Committee, CEN Toy Safety Committee and the UK and EU Notified bodies Group, giving us a unique insight into the hazards associated with a wide variety of toys and juvenile products”, adds Malcolm.

More information on the Toy Safety Directive and its impact can be found on Bureau Veritas Consumer Product Services website: http://www.bvcps.co.uk/toysafety

About Bureau Veritas

Founded in 1828, Bureau Veritas is an international group specialised in the inspection, analysis, audit, and certification of products, infrastructure (buildings, industrial sites, equipment, ships, etc.) and management systems (ISO standards etc.) in relation to regulatory or voluntary frameworks.
Bureau Veritas ranks as the world's second largest group in conformity assessment and certification services in the fields of quality, health and safety, environment, and social responsibility ("QHSE") and the world leader in QHSE services not including raw materials inspection. Bureau Veritas is recognised and accredited by major national and international organisations.

Bureau Veritas is present in 140 countries through a network of 900 offices and laboratories. It has more than 40,000 employees and a client base of more than 370,000 staff.

Bureau Veritas is headquartered in France and listed on the French Bourse.

For more press information, please contact Bureau Veritas CPS Marketing Department on: +44 (0)1925 854360 or by email: bvsales(at)uk(dot)bureauveritas(dot)com.

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Alexa Besnard
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