Effective Market Surveillance helps Children Play Safe

The need for effective and well enforced market surveillance to help ensure that toys on the EU market are safe is highlighted by the 2015 statistics for the EU’s rapid alert system for non-food dangerous products (RAPEX), published today by the Commission.

TIE and its members welcome the role that RAPEX plays in making sure that toys on the EU market meet the strict toy safety rules and standards in place. Effective and well-enforced market surveillance prevent inferior products from reaching the market and helps to protect children.

Because they are destined for children, toys are one of the most strictly regulated and frequently scrutinised product categories in the EU. The 555 toys notified by national authorities on RAPEX in 2015, highlights the special attention that national authorities pay to this product category.

The number of toys notified does not mean that toys are unsafe for children – if all consumer products enjoyed the same level of scrutiny, we would see a comparable increase in the number of notifications for other categories.

TIE Director General, Catherine Van Reeth said, “RAPEX does an important job in making sure that the toys on the EU market live up to the strict toy safety rules and standards in place. We are pleased to see a 12% decrease in the number of toys notified between 2014 and 2015. We work with the reputable members of the sector and the authorities to make sure the toys entering the market are safe for children to play with.”

She added, “It is important to recognize that the vast majority of notified toy brands continue to be outside of the membership of TIE or its members. The few notifications that did concern our members – reputable companies that are committed to toy safety – were dealt with promptly and effectively. It’s important that strong market surveillance is in place to catch the disreputable companies who actively avoid implementing the rules and standards.”

Consumers can also play a part in helping children to enjoy safe play. This includes steps such as buying toys from trustworthy retailers, keeping an eye out for counterfeit toys and reporting any problems to the manufacturer. Watch our video of top tips here to find out more ways to help children have the best play experience.

The European Commission’s 2015 RAPEX statistics are available here.

To learn more about the steps reputable toy manufacturers take to guarantee toy safety, watch this short video.

For media enquiries, please contact the TIE Secretariat on 0032 2 213 41 90