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Serious allegations against Temu: Toys are dangerous for children

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Serious allegations against Temu: Toys are dangerous for children

A test purchase by the German Association of the Toy Industry showed that 95 percent of the toys purchased on Temu pose a safety risk for children. picture alliance / NurPhoto | Nikos Pekiaridis

According to the German Association of the Toy Industry (DSVI), safety risks for children were found in 95 percent of the toys purchased on Temu during a test purchase.

During test purchases, the Toys Industries of Europe (TIE) association did not find any toys that met EU safety regulations.

DSVI and TIE are calling for stricter controls, improvements to the Toy Safety Directive and more obligations for online platforms.

European toy manufacturers criticize the safety of products on the Chinese online marketplace Temu and call for stricter controls. According to the German Association of the Toy Industry (DSVI), a test purchase at the end of 2023 revealed a safety risk for children in 95 percent of the toys purchased on Temu. These results are worrying, according to the association.

The Toys Industries of Europe (TIE) association said it bought 19 toys through Temu. None complied with the applicable EU safety regulations for toys, 18 did not comply with the EN 71 series play standards. In a slime toy, the content of the semimetal boron was eleven times higher than the legal limit for toys. With other toys there was a risk that children could choke or injure themselves on small parts.

What is Temu?

Temu is an online shop from the Chinese company PDD Holdings, which has also been available in Europe since April 2023. Similar to its competitor Alibaba, Temu is a marketplace. The provider does not sell its own products, but usually has them delivered directly from Chinese manufacturers – one of the reasons for the low prices. In addition, a flood of online marketing and paid product presentations on social media have catapulted the trading platform’s app to number one in the download chart.

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There is also criticism of the company. Pinduoduo, the first store of NASDAQ-listed parent company PDD, reportedly contained malware. For trial purchases of the WDR and from Business Insider, electronic items were missing CE markings. Temu itself stated that it has now checked more strictly and has “immediately removed offers of products that do not meet the standard”. And when shipping is often done individually by plane, sustainability is questionable. You can read what you generally need to know about customs, returns and quality here.

A Temu spokeswoman said an internal investigation was immediately launched after receiving the test results. All 19 products have been removed and are no longer available on the EU website. “Product safety is of utmost importance to us and we have increased monitoring of this product group and associated requirements.“

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Temu checks the traders who sell on the marketplace and carries out random checks on the products itself, the spokeswoman continued. Violations could lead to penalties, the delisting of products or the blocking of providers.

DSVI and TIE see a gap in the EU regulations, as third-party providers outside the EU cannot be held liable for the safety of toys. They are therefore calling, among other things, for improvements to the toy safety directive, more controls by market surveillance authorities even for small imports and more obligations for online platforms.

AA/dpa

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