Disney, Toys 'R Us To Begin Random Testing Of Toys

Disney is a name a lot of parents trust, so it came as a surprise to many that toys and jewelry featuring Disney characters would be recalled for lead contamination. The jewelry seen here, for example, was recalled for lead contamination after being sold at mall outlets like The Limited, Too.

So, doesn’t Disney test products that use its name?

Well, no.

But they’re going to start, according to the New York Times:

Executives at Disney made the decision to institute the testing on Thursday and intend to inform Mattel and other toy manufacturers today.

“It sends the message that we are looking over their shoulders,” said Andy Mooney, the chairman of Disney’s consumer products division.

Disney’s plan represents a significant shift in the toy business. Traditionally, these companies have licensed their characters to toy companies, deposited their royalty checks and left quality control up to the manufacturers. Indeed, the toymakers are usually held liable legally for harm caused by the toys they make.

Toys ‘R Us also announced that starting this week “engineers hired by the company will regularly visit random Toys “R” Us stores, fill their carts with branded toys and take them to independent labs for testing.”

“In the past, the industry may have accepted a pattern of recalling products as a way of making sure products are safe,” said Gerald L. Storch, the chief executive of Toys “R” Us. “That’s clearly not acceptable anymore.”

This renewed interest in quality by retailers and companies like Disney, Sesame Workshop, and Nickelodeon is good news for consumers and even better news for the CPSC’s one full-time toy tester.

Disney says that children’s toys and jewelry will be tested off the shelf at major retailers such as Walmart, Target, KB Toys, etc.

Disney to Test Character Toys for Lead Paint [New York Times]
(Photo:CPSC)