40% of children’s toys bought from marketplaces unsafe

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Recent research from Which? has found that 40% of children’s toys bought on online marketplaces have failed safety tests. Out of 28 toys tested from marketplaces AliExpress, Amazon, eBay and Wish, 12 failed.

The findings showed that the following hazards were present in some of the children’s toys.

  • 12 of the 28 toys tested failed safety tests with some failing multiple times.
  • 10 toys presented a choking risk for a child. Two toys posed a strangulation risk.
  • Two toys had either swallowable magnets or accessible batteries that could cause serious internal harm to a child if ingested.
  • In all we found more than 50 safety failures in the 12 toys that failed safety tests.

What the marketplaces say

‘The safety of our customers is of paramount importance to AliExpress. After being contacted by Which?, we took swift action and removed the affected products. As a marketplace based business, the sale by merchants of products that violate the Product Listing Policy of AliExpress is prohibited. We have policies and procedures to identify violations and take action. We will continue to take action against sellers who violate our terms of use.’
– AliExpress

‘Safety is important to Amazon and we want customers to shop with confidence on our stores. We have proactive measures in place to prevent suspicious or non-compliant products from being listed and we monitor the products sold in our stores for product safety concerns. When appropriate, we remove a product from the store, reach out to sellers, manufacturers, and government agencies for additional information, or take other actions. If customers have concerns about an item they’ve purchased, we encourage them to contact our Customer Service directly so we can investigate and take appropriate action.’
– Amazon

‘We take the safety of our users extremely seriously and work closely with authorities including Trading Standards to help ensure sellers and listings on eBay comply with laws and regulations. We have removed the products identified by Which? and taken the appropriate action on the sellers. We have filters in places which automatically block listings which are unsafe or do not comply with our policies. These blocked six million unsafe listings from making it onto site in 2020. Our teams also work around the clock as an additional safety net to manually review and remove anything which may not have been caught by our filters.’
– eBay

‘All merchants on our platform are required to adhere to local laws and safety standards where their goods are sold. In the rare instance where a product falls foul of those standards, it is promptly removed and, where appropriate, the merchant in question faces a potential suspension from the platform.’
– Wish

Stay vigilant

Consumers could lose trust in marketplaces that continue to sell fake and unsafe goods. Genuine sellers then lose business. It’s already clear that consumers are losing trust, feeling the need to conduct in-depth research before buying. Of course, as a responsible seller you probably ensure your regular suppliers fully test and CE verify the products you source and sell but if you’re using alternatives since coronavirus it’s worth remembering not all suppliers are diligent.

2 Responses

  1. Anyone want to bet that the majority of these unsafe toys originated in China?

  2. Yeah it’s all talk. These marketplaces won’t say or do anything that upsets Big Daddy (and I don’t mean the wrestler). Best bet is to never buy anything by a brand you don’t recognise – like all these stolen IP clone items on Amazon with phony brand names – unfortunately the average British “consumer” cares more about price than quality, so they often search the cheapest thing first. (yeah I know that the famous brands are all made over there too, but at least there APPEARS to be a bit more quality control)


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