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
‘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.’
‘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.’
‘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.’
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.