Consumer Toy Safety Survey by eToys.com

A recent consumer survey by online toy retailer, eToys.com, found that 37% plan to spend the same amount or more on toys this holiday season...

A recent consumer survey by online toy retailer, eToys.com, found that 37% plan to spend the same amount or more on toys this holiday season compared to previous years. While 59% of those surveyed believe toys made outside the US are less safe than those made in America, 43% of respondents say they will purchase toys this holiday season regardless of the country of origin. Only 32% indicated they won't buy toys made in China. Just 25% of those surveyed say they will buy only toys made in America

  • Do consumers associate familiar brand names with toy safety? Fifty-three percent of respondents believe toys from major toy manufacturers are generally safer than toys from smaller ones, and 56% say they will purchase toys only made by companies they know this holiday season.



  • Who’s responsible for toy safety and who will pay the cost? When asked by eToys.com who bears the responsibility for ensuring toy safety in the US, 43% of those polled think a federal agency has the primary responsibility for guaranteeing toy safety, followed by 31% who think it’s the job of US-based toy companies. Only 2% of those polled think an overseas factory is responsible for the safety of toys sold in the US.



  • Is money an issue when it comes to toy safety? Forty-five percent of consumers responding to the eToys.com poll say they are willing to pay more for toys made in America, with 35% of respondents willing to pay up to 10% more than the current retail price. Slightly more than a third of participants, however, said they are not willing to pay more for toys made in the US



  • Consumers reflect on the current state of toy safety. Consumers polled by eToys.com perceive toys made in the US, Canada, and Europe to be the safest. Conversely, they feel toys made in China are the least safe, followed by Southeast Asia and India. Also, despite the recent toy recalls—69% of those surveyed say toys are safer now than when they were children.



  • Are parents’ concerns in the right place? The eToys survey respondents ranked hazardous chemicals as the greatest threat posed by toys to the health and safety of children, followed by lead paint and toys containing sharp pieces. Choking hazards from small parts, which according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) pose the greatest safety risk, ranked fourth on the list of potential hazards, followed by “breaks easily” and “contains small magnets.”



  • Are toy labels taken seriously? When asked by eToys.com to interpret age labeling on toy packages, a majority of parents – 59% – correctly stated that age labels indicate the toy is safe for play by children in the indicated range. However, more than a third of those surveyed incorrectly stated that age labels indicate the intellectual capacity required to play with the toys.


“Since 2000, we have been one of the few retailers with the capability and resources to notify our customers if a toy they purchased is recalled,” said Sheliah Gilliland, spokesperson for eToys.com. “Seventy-two percent of those polled said this is an important service to them. Through email notifications and our new Toys Safety Center (www.etoys.com/safety), eToys is focused on helping families play safely.”

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