Company: Our item doesn't belong on worst toy list
A toy company today disputed the inclusion of one of its products on a list of the year's "10 worst toys" as compiled by the nonprofit group World Against Toys Causing Harm Inc., or WATCH.
A story in today's Globe reported that the group included on its list the "Lil' Giddy-Up Sak with Horse" from Douglas Co. of Keene, N.H.
The toy is a miniature plush-toy horse that comes in a purse.
In an e-mail to the Globe, Douglas president Scott Clarke wrote that Lil' Giddy-Up Sak should not be on any list that includes recalled toys because his product has been tested many times and the horse and purse meet and exceed government standards.
But Clarke added, "We agree with the comment from WATCH that this item should be more clearly labeled, and we will make the horse age grade match the age grade of the purse."
The horse is labeled that it's age appropriate for "birth and up," and the purse is labeled as appropriate for "18 months and up," said Clarke, who added the labels would be modified to both read that they're appropriate for "18 months and up."
WATCH director James A. Swartz said that the purpose of the top 10 list is not to catalog toys that are recalled but to cite examples of the types of potential hazards that parents could find in toys on store shelves.
Only one item on the list, the Go Diego Go Animal Rescue Boat, has also been recalled, in this case for lead-content issues, Swartz said.
As for Lil' Giddy-Up Sak, Swartz said that the purse features a wooden bead that could get detached during play; according to Swartz, the bead is small enough to pose a choking hazard and shouldn't be included in a toy "marketed for babies."
Told that Douglas was planning a label change, Swartz replied, "That's a good start."
Clarke noted that the bead on the Lil' Giddy-Up Sak is securely fastened.
"It does not detach with play," he said.
(By Chris Reidy, Globe staff)