Relax, Toy Hamsters Not Metalloid Death Bringers After All

You can dig up that bag of Zhu Zhus from your backyard and re-wrap them for the kids again. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has said that the robot hamsters are not loaded with too much antimony after all, despite claims made by the website GoodGuide.

The Los Angeles Times reports,

“The Consumer Product Safety Commission confirmed today that the popular Zhu Zhu toy is not out of compliance with the antimony or other heavy-metal limits of the new U.S. mandatory toy standard,” agency spokesman Scott Wolfson said.

“We will still do our own independent testing at CPSC. But we’re confident today and can confirm that the toy does not violate the very protective antimony standard that applies to all toys in the United States,” Wolfson said.

“Zhu Zhu Pets are safe, U.S. agency says”

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  1. H3ion says:

    “For its part, GoodGuide began backtracking Monday afternoon, releasing a statement that clarified its testing methods and apologized for comparing its findings to federal standards.”

    Cepia, the manufacturer, claimed that GoodGuide was using a testing method not approved by CPSC. The important thing is that Zhu Zhus can serve as the focal point for consumer warfare at your local store.

  2. SaraFimm says:

    I think someone with a TON of money behind them lobbied to keep the Zhu Zhu Pets on the store shelves. Someone who owns lots of American IOUs. Like … say … China.

    • coym says:

      Cepia is a US based company.

      • ecwis says:

        But all their manufacturing is done in China… Shutting down the US business would likely shut down the plant in China.

        • mannyvel says:

          Oh, please. They are about as important to China as the manufacturer of the plastic sleeves they put on Slim-Jims is to the US.

          • nagumi says:

            Actually – the plastic sleeves are made in china :D

            • _hi_ says:

              He’s right. China is a big part of this. If people actually knew China was doing this on purpose with the aid of the Federal Government (those people who take bribes and are corrupt in the system) to create some sort of wacked out population control then what would you do? Probably nothing. You probably think it’s all a joke. These are sick people, and it’s real, and it’s going on right now.

              Google: ‘Eugenics’

              China’s a leading advocate of population control and eugenics and they are the USA’s enemy.

              So just think about that while you shop at the China Warehouse (Walmart/Target) and buy all the lead for your kids to enjoy. Think about that as your innocent young eat supper off the plates that leech lead from the paint.

              Lead plates source:
              http://consumerist.com/2007/11/dinner-plates-on-walmart-shelves-contain-lead.html

              Eugenics:
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics
              http://galton.org/ – click on Eugenics

    • NeverLetMeDown says:

      Either that, or a consumer advocate nobody’s ever heard of didn’t do a test properly and has now admitted as much. My buddy Occam is betting on that explanation.

    • Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

      I think SaraFimm smacked the proverbial nail on the head. Am I the only one who noticed the CPSC quoted as saying the toy is not out of compliance and then stating they will do their own independent testing. Ah, how can the toy be safe CPSC…if you haven’t tested it yet??

  3. Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

    Okay, am I the only one who caught the quote here? First the CPSC says that the toy is not out of compliance and then the CPSC says they will do their own testing. Sooo, how do they know the toy’s in compliance if they haven’t tested it?

    I think SaraFimm might be on to something…makes ya think…

  4. Crim Law Geek says:

    Something tells me GoodGuide is going to be on the receiving end of a heck of a lawsuit from Cepia!

  5. LatherRinseRepeat says:

    I still cannot believe this is the hot toy of the season. From what I’ve seen, they look like the cheap-o toys you’d typically find at swap meets or bargain stores.

    I guess I’m getting old. LOL.

    And get off my lawn!

    • Catch153 says:

      Are you serious? Tickle Me Elmos were pretty cool, but Furbys are downright creepy, and they were “the thing” a few years ago. (More like John Romero’s “The Thing” in my opinion.) I think these little guys are a really clever, fun idea. My wife and I kind of want one.

  6. thanq says:

    … and it was Mr. Squiggles, out of all of them, that was suspected of carrying the deadly payload.

    Here’s a better explanation of the test via NPR:

    “(…) So, the Good Guide used essentially an x-ray gun and they measure how much of the chemical is in the toy by weight. (…) People got very, very excited and said, oh my goodness, this is over the limit for the federal safety standards, but in fact, it’s not. The way you are supposed to test for this chemical under the U.S. federal standard is you try to figure out how much of this chemical is going to leach out or rub out.

    And when you do the test that way, the toy comes out with almost zero of this chemical, antimony.”

    • _hi_ says:

      I think the federal standard needs to be looked at. If this product contains a toxic chemical (lots of it) even though it doesn’t leach out it still should not be given to kid to play with. What do kids do with toys? They break them. They will find a way to break them and then be exposed to the chemical.

  7. pop top says:

    I had a hamster named Squiggles and she was a great pet. Mr. Squiggles is making a bad name for all squiggly hamsters everywhere.

  8. Zowzers says:

    A lot of panic over an misunderstood metal.

    Zhu Zhu toys are electronic pets, antimony is used in lead free solder. So unless a child tears the toy apart and licks circuit board, that child will never come in contact with any of the antimony the toy contains.

    Granted from experience as once being a kid and being around kids, toy destruction can and does occur. But if that is your concern, you should not buy any electronic toys at all. As everything from your iPhone to your kids speak-n-Spell contains antimony.

  9. gg says:

    “GoodGuide” is really not a “consumer” site like the Consumerist. “GoodGuide” is really just an affiliate marketer that makes money from referrels to sites like the Apple App Store and Amazon.com. They most likely created the big stink about Zhu Zhus to drive traffic and make more money from referrals. If they were really that concerned about your kids safety why do they include pricing information and a link to the Amazon to purchase the very toy they declare as unsafe? The FTC just came out with rules that require bloggers and sites like “GoodGuide” to declare these relationships. Where is the declaration on ‘GoodGuide”? I can’t find it…..

  10. mbemom says:

    I’m so glad these stupid little things are safe. My daughter, the youngest and last to believe in Santa, just told me they are what she is asking him for this year. I found some online but don’t know how in the world I could possibly explain it if they were suddenly recalled. “Um, sorry honey. Santa’s elves accidentally poisoned your toy hamsters.”