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Issue Date: Vol. 43, No. 10, October 2003, Posted On: 10/13/2003

NBVA Executive Committee Announces Toy Safety Standard Proposal

Hank Schlesinger

LAS VEGAS - The executive committee of the National Bulk Vendors Association unanimously agreed to propose adoption of a Toy Safety Standard by the Board of Directors, which will consider the standard at its annual meeting in April 2004. The executive committee proposed the move at its annual meeting here on September 20.

According to a statement provided by the NBVA, "The goal of the Association at all times is to assure that all toys and novelties are safe for children, the exclusive customers of the bulk vendors."

The purpose of the safety standard is intended to clarify that every importer and supplier of bulk vending merchandise has the primary responsibility to ensure that toys or novelties sold to bulk vending operators have passed applicable toy safety tests.

"This means that every toy or novelty must be tested by one of the testing facilities approved by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, such as ACTS or Intertech, and the suppliers must make sure that those tests are completed satisfactorily before delivery to the operator for resale," the NBVA statement explained. "Under the proposed standard, operators are entitled to rely on the suppliers to do their jobs and on each sale, the suppliers will be considered to have represented and warranted to each operator that the supplier either has tested each toy or novelty or that the supplier has copies of test certifications for each toy or novelty from the manufacturer that confirm compliance with applicable tests."

Additionally, suppliers must furnish copies of the test certifications to operators when the toys or novelties are first shipped to the operator or when requested by an operator.

According the executive committee, the timing of the proposed action was triggered by a recent incident in which a young patron was diagnosed with lead poisoning after swallowing a necklace pendant purchased from a bulk vending machine. Since then, the CPSC has called for a recall of all 1.4 million necklaces sold by Toy 'n Joy.

However, the NBVA executive committee noted that the proposed Toy Safety Standard is unlikely to have any significant impact on suppliers and manufacturers who are already accustomed to the extensive testing requirements.

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