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Study: Chinese toys as safe as those made elsewhere
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09:29, November 11, 2007

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Despite the media attention paid to the alleged dangers associated with Chinese-made toys, they pose no more risk than toys made elsewhere and may even be safer, a Canadian study has found.

The recalls of Chinese-made toys are no more frequent than of toys made elsewhere, says the study, which was published Thursday by the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada (APFC).

The study, entitled "Toy Import and Recall Levels: Is there a Connection," says the recall of Chinese toys only seem more common because China produces by far the most toys.

The study was written by Professor Paul W. Beamish of the University of Western Ontario, Hari Bapuji and Andre Laplume, both of the University of Manitoba.

According to their report, although the number of China-related toy recalls is growing, this increase is not out of proportion with the increases in recalls from other countries.

Toy imports from other countries are proportionately recalled as often as or more often than their Chinese counterparts, and, unlike China, manufacturing problems are more likely to be the cause of these recalls, it says.

In 2004, four firms recalled 150 million pieces of toy jewelry made in India because they contained excessive amounts of lead. In 2002, approximately 75,000 South Korean-made pedal-cars, retailing at between 100 to 300 U.S. dollars, were recalled because of their high lead content, says the study.

In other words, at worst, Chinese toys are as safe as those toys made elsewhere. At best, they are even safer, the study says.

The professors also noticed that while toy recalls have increased steadily since 1988, most recalls are the result of toy design defects, not manufacturing problems.

In an earlier report entitled "Toy Recalls -- Is China Really the Problem?", Bapuji and Beamish pointed out that of the 550 U.S. toy recalls since 1988, 420, more than three quarters, involved design flaws and only a tenth of recalls involved manufacturing flaws.

Source: Xinhua

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