Baby Safety Month: Take a Second Look at Second Hand Baby Gear
Back-to-school season means lots of purchases for the youngest members of our families.
And every September, the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) reminds parents to keep a close eye on the products purchased for their children.
This year, Baby Safety Month focuses on the importance of safely using second hand, hand-me-down and heirloom baby gear. As tough economic times continue, everyone is looking for ways to save money. It’s natural to visit consignment shops, thrift stores, and other resale outlets in person and online or to borrow older gear from friends and family. While these stores and hand me downs can provide some great options, parents and caregivers need to be particularly cautious when it comes to children using second hand items.
But the safety of products should not rely solely on consumers.
Manufacturers and retailers should also be aware of some basic tips that can be applied to ensure that children’s products found on store shelves or tucked away in people’s basements and garages are safe.
In honor of Baby Safety Month, here are a few best practices children’s product retailers and manufacturers should always keep in mind:
- Include product safety registration cards with each product so parents can register their child’s product and streamline the communication process in the event of a recall or safety alert.
- Establish a product traceability program and include procedures for handling customer complaints, keeping in mind that every detail of this process must be documented for regulatory compliance.
- Stay up-to-date on the latest regulations announced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to ensure that your business is providing consumers with the safest and highest quality of products.
- Have a product recall plan in place that will effectively identify the scope and severity of the event at hand – doing so will ensure that all affected product is removed from the market in a quick manner.
- Keep detailed records of those customers who have purchased a product in case it is affected by a recall – doing so will ease the notification process.
- Create a “dark site” as part of your online strategy that can be updated and activated in the event of a recall, so consumers can easily access information about potential safety issues.
- Stay up-to-date on product recall-related news stories and quickly react to any recall notices received by manufacturers or suppliers.
- For second-hand retailers, selling recalled products is illegal – remember to regularly check CPSC’s list of recalled products to ensure regulatory compliance.
While we all hope that we never have to endure a recall event, the fact of the matter is that they do happen. And when they do, it is best to be prepared. Ensuring that potentially dangerous products are off the market is not only in the best interest of consumers but also for a business’ brand and bottom line.
How does your business ensure that children’s products reaching consumer hands are safe and of high quality? Do you think CPSC is doing enough to ensure that unsafe second hand products don’t reach children? We welcome your thoughts below.
Stericycle ExpertRECALL™ is the industry leader in recall logistics and regulatory compliance for consumer product, pharmaceutical, medical device, juvenile product, and food and beverage recalls. ExpertRECALL’s professionals are experts in recall management who can help you streamline the entire product recall process.