Saturday, September 1, 2007

Infant and Toddler Toys You Can Count On

During our research, finding infant and toddler toys has been nearly impossible. The most readily available brands in the US, Fisher Price and Playskool, are mostly made in China and have been under several recalls lately. We have finally discovered a few options for the tiniest ones in your life!

Haba is a well known German line of toys that are generally wooden with a strong Waldorf influence. Many toys from Haba are Made in China but we have found these Haba toys are made in Europe. Haba also makes a line of pretend food that is entirely crafted in Germany.



For cuddly dolls and snugglies, check out the like by Kathe Kruse, many are infant safe, washable and all are made in Germany.



Looking for an infant gym but trying to avoid the Fisher Price models? This Selecta Musina playgym is made in Germany and perfect for your lead-free family!


If you're searching for puzzles, Chelona makes a wide selection of puzzles and wooden board books, all made in Greece.



Finally, a collection of wooden animals for pretend play or simply carrying around everywhere baby goes. Holztiger makes a selection of farm, zoo and ocean animals that your child is sure to love. All are made in Germany and painted with a special non-toxic paint that makes them saliva resistant. We especially like:

15 comments:

natesgirl said...

I'm such a big fan of haba toys too (err for my kids I mean) good thing we mostly have the play food

Jmama said...

Although some Haba toys are made in China, all the raw materials are provided to the factories from Germany. They then go back to Germany for rigorous testing which far surpasses U.S. standards before becoming available to the American public.

Sacramento Coffee and Sacramento Safe Kids said...

As we have seen with the Aquadots recall, there is no guarantee that the factory in China will use the materials they are told to use. New information in from the Aquadots recall suggests that they were told to change the chemical and didn't because it was 1/3 the price of the originally planned concoction.

Jmama said...

True, but Haba directly supervises all of it's Chinese factories. Of course with all of these recalls it is hard to just trust any company's word any more, but that is just as true with companies that you have listed as "safe". Maybe their products don't have lead, but that doesn't mean they are safe. Do all companies account for where their raw materials come from? Wood, screws, etc.? You have to do your own research and decide for yourself.

Jmama said...

Were you aware that Chelona also has some products made in China?

BTW, I think that what you are doing is great, it can be so hard to do all this research!

Sacramento Coffee and Sacramento Safe Kids said...

We have been told by Chelona that all of their toys are manufactured in Greece. They do have a small selection of room accessories that they say are made in China. We haven't seen anything to confirm that any toys are made outside of Greece. If you have specific info, please let us know.

Jmama said...

I just spoke with the U.S. distributor for Chelona by phone who confirmed that many of Chelona's puzzles and games are made in China and they are transitioning so that the majority of Chelona's products will be made in China. Products made in Greece are still available through stores with older inventory, but newer products are made in China.

All of the 3-Layer Story Puzzles, some of the mini-discovery puzzles, the City Link puzzles, Super Tray puzzles, the books, and more are made in China.

Sacramento Coffee and Sacramento Safe Kids said...

We will have to contact Chelona again- as of August, their corporate headquarters (not the distributors) confirmed with us that all toys and puzzles are manufactured in Greece. We will update you when we know more.

laura said...

My company, Nest, has just introduced a new line of wooden toys that are made in New England from sustainably harvested maple and non-toxic finishes. Check us out at http://www.nestplease.com/store/

We also have a line of children's furnishings that are made through a fare trade partnership in India using sustainable and safe materials.

Please take a look and let us know if you have any questions!

Anonymous said...

This is a great site... I too was disappointed to see both Melissa & Doug & HABA on the check carefully list but it is an excellent reminder that we need to be very cautious. At this point I am very skeptical about the various companies "rigorous testing". One option I have not really heard about is how to test the toys you have at home for lead. There are a few different inexpensive tests on the market. I purchased one of the kits (haven't received it yet). I plan to test all of my son's toys in our home. I also plan on buying a packet of tests for our daycare.

Sacramento Coffee and Sacramento Safe Kids said...

Thank you for the information on Nest Products. We are currently researching your company and we will be adding a recommendation soon. We're looking forward to adding you to our Brands you can trust list!

Anonymous said...

Please check out the company Geo Australia. They make plastic geometric shapes called GeoFix that can be clicked together into endless fun designs. Even little kids will have fun clicking them into rows or making 6 triangles into hexagons...My husband first bought a set of Geofix at the National Museum of Art gift shop, but I think you can order them online. We loved them so much we bought a second set so that we had lots of shapes to share. The company's website, www.geoaustralia.com, states that "we have always prided ourselves on using only internationally acceptable food-contact grade polymer resins & pigments in the manufacturing process of our toys, which are exported replete with testing certificates even to countries with the most stringent requirements." Well, whatever -- my kids(and my husband and I) love them!

Jennifer said...

I ordered from Little Tikes before I read your blog. Little Tikes CANNOT be trusted!! I ordered 4 items listed on their toys "Made in USA" page and 2 of them are made in CHINA! :-( I have to wait until Monday to speak to a customer representative about this matter.

Sacramento Coffee and Sacramento Safe Kids said...

This is so disappointing- please let us know what Little Tykes says. They are representing many toys online as Made in the USA. We need to know if that's not true. Thanks!

Jennifer said...

OK, I spoke to a Monica at Little Tikes. I explained to her that I purchsed from the website labeled Toys made in USA. She claims that the items need to have an American flag next to them. After a little arguement she finally decided to credit my account the amount for the two toys that are made in China.

I say if you are going to purchase from this Little Tikes you should double check with customer service to make sure the items are China FREE. Get the Reps name and customer service number.
I will be eager to see this credit!!