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20 October 2021

Companies in hot water over selling unsafe hot water bottles and toys

A budget gift store and a wholesaler have been fined $140,000 for selling toys that failed safety standards and hot water bottles that posed safety risks.

Paramount Merchandise Company was fined $104,000 after it pleaded guilty for suppling banned hot water bottles and also for claiming they complied with safety standards when they did not.

The company has recalled the hot water bottles from sale.

The budget gift store chain, GO!NZ, owned by ND Import & Export, has been fined $36,000 for selling toys that didn’t comply with the mandatory product safety standard, and for supplying banned hot water bottles.

Toys that didn’t meet the standards were a colourful stacking toy, a pink toy guitar and a “Frozen” toy drum set, which all had removable components or parts that were small enough to lodge in a child’s throat.

ND Import & Export has withdrawn these products from sale.

Consumer NZ chief executive Jon Duffy said safety standards exist to ensure consumers can be confident that products they buy are safe.

“It’s particularly concerning to see companies misleading purchasers about whether their products comply with these standards. These fines send a clear message that suppliers need to be aware of their obligations and represent products honestly, especially where child safety is concerned,” Duffy said.

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