Lotsa Goodies fined over unsafe toys

Toy importer and retailer 2 Boys Trading, which operates Lotsa Goodies, was fined for selling unsafe toys for a period of seven years.

2 Boys was slapped with a $74,250 on 13 toy safety-related charges under the Fair Trading Act 1986 after a Commerce Commission investigation.

The Commerce Commission said 2 Boys had been importing toys and selling them in eight Lotsa Goodies retail outlets, which are owned by companies linked to the 2 Boys owners. The shops are in Auckland, Hamilton and Christchurch.

“2 Boys sold approximately 1700 units of three toys, all of which failed to pass testing undertaken by the Commission,” the Commerce Commision NZ said.

The Commission said small parts came free from the toys during testing, and those parts were small enough to be a choking hazard for young children. In addition, some toys fitted fully inside a testing template, meaning they were also a choking hazard.

The toys in question include an aquatic toy set, supplied between October 2015 and March 2018; baby star baby rattles, supplied between May 2012 and November 2016 and a 5.5-inch soft plastic doll, supplied between May and December 2017.

The baby rattle packaging was labelled “3+” and “not suitable for children under 3 years”. The aquatic toy set was labelled “Warning: Choking Hazard – Small parts, Not for children under 3 years” and the same wording was on the rear of the doll packaging.

Judge Chris Field said during the sentencing on June 20 at the Manukau District Court that they needed to “send a clear message to other companies trading in this way that significant penalties can be imposed for breaches of this kind.”

Field said 2 Boys “did not conduct any of its own checks apart from generally checking the product was as ordered and relied on guidelines which stated the toys were for use for children aged 3 and over.”

Commission chair Anna Rawlings said the labelling is a notable feature of the case.

“It attempts to suggest the toys are not suitable for children under 3 years of age,” she said. “These are clearly toys intended for children 36 months of age and under, and traders cannot avoid their legal obligations by including ‘3+’ labelling or similar.”


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