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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 September 2007, 05:42 GMT 06:42 UK
Seven Barbie lines recalled in UK
Dream Puppy House, with affected puppy circled. Copyright: Mattel
The paint on some of the accessories contains lead
Seven Barbie pet and furniture playsets have been recalled in the UK by Mattel, because parts have lead in their paint.

Playsets include Dream Puppy House and Dream Kitty Condo. No actual Barbies are included.

Mattel said 2,540 toys were being recalled in total. They were sold between October 2006 and August 2007.

The firm, which has already had two recalls this summer, said the latest notice was a result of its investigation of toys made in China.

'We apologise again'

Globally the firm is recalling 700,000 toys that have excessive amounts of lead paint.

We are hopeful consumers will judge us by our actions, not by the fact that we discovered some sub-contractors that did not do the right thing
Mattel's international vice president, Brian Stockton

The firm said in a statement that it had now implemented a strengthened, three-point check system to test toys throughout the manufacturing process.

And it had completed a testing programme for most of its toys.

Robert A Eckert, Mattel chairman and chief executive officer, said: "We apologise again to everyone affected and promise that we will continue to focus on ensuring the safety and quality of our toys."

The recalled Barbie accessories include:

  • Dream Puppy House Playset (J9485) sold since 13 October 2006, because of the paint on the dog
  • Dream Kitty Condo Playset (J9486) sold since 13 October 2006, because of the paint on the cat
  • Table & Chairs Kitchen Playset (K8606) sold since 30 October 2006 because of the paint on two dinner plates, the dog, the crisp bowl and the salad bowl
  • Bathtub & Toilet Bathroom Playset (K8607) sold since 30 October because of the brown on the cat
  • Futon & Table Living Room Playset (K8608) sold since 30 October 2006 because of the brown on the cat
  • Desk & Chair Bedroom Playset (K8609) sold since 30 October 2006 because of the brown on the dog
  • Couch & Table Living Room Playset (K8613) sold since 30 October 2006 because of the yellow flower on the handbag.

The firm said the playsets had been made by Holder Plastic Company, which had subcontracted the painting of some of the pieces to firms Dong Lian Fa and Yip Sing. Neither of these were now producing toys for Mattel, it said.

Customers who think they have an affected toy should check the bottom of the toys for their model numbers.

They can then give this number to Mattel online or over the phone. If affected, they will be sent a pre-paid label to return the parts, and Mattel will then send out replacements. The firm said it would also send out bonus pieces and parts.

'No sympathy'

Last month Mattel recalled 94,000 Fisher-Price toys in the UK, and a fortnight later two million Polly Pocket, Batman and Barbie toys, on both occasions blaming the Chinese manufacturers.

Christopher Devereux, managing director of ChinaSavvy, which helps foreign buyers find Chinese factories that make products such as plastic parts, said foreign buyers must constantly monitor and inspect their Chinese suppliers.

"I really don't have any sympathy for Mattel," he said.

"There's no excuse to let so much product go through with lead in its paint. They should be testing.

"It's not difficult. There are hundreds of quality control laboratories in China."

Mattel's international vice president, Brian Stockton, said the firm was "being open, honest and forthright with consumers about what is going on".

"We are hopeful consumers will judge us by our actions, not by the fact that we discovered some sub-contractors that did not do the right thing."

The Republic of Ireland is not affected by this recall.

Anyone concerned can ring Mattel on 0808 234 8437.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Mattel spokesman pledges to step up quality checks



SEE ALSO
Mattel 'set to recall more toys'
04 Sep 07 |  Business
Mattel recalls millions more toys
14 Aug 07 |  Business
Toys recalled over safety fears
02 Aug 07 |  Asia-Pacific

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