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EcoWaste warns vs secondhand toys from thrift stores

By: - Reporter / @KAguilarINQ
/ 11:55 AM August 12, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — Secondhand toys sold for a cheaper price in thrift stores or ukay-ukay may not be exactly safe for children, EcoWaste Coalition warned Monday. 

In a statement, the environmental group said some products in ukay-ukay stores or “UK stores” are laden with chemicals dangerous to human health, especially to a child’s developing brain and central nervous system. 

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Some of the toys the group has tested have high bromine content ranging from 723 to 4,190 parts per million (ppm), with some exceeding the 1,000 ppm limit.

“The bromine found on the black plastic component of these toys, which may come from recycled plastic electronic casings, may indicate the presence of brominated flame retardant chemicals or BFRs,” EcoWaste Coalition’s Chemical Safety Campaigner Thony Dizon said. 

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BFRs such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are known to interfere with the endocrine or hormone system, the group explained.

EcoWaste said hepatotoxicity or chemical-driven liver damage and neurotoxicity or damage to the central or peripheral nervous system are other potential effects of exposure to BFRs.

Furthermore, the group also discovered there are toys in ukay-ukay stores being sold without the required labeling information.

“None of the items we bought from UK stores are labeled, which goes against the mandatory labeling requirements for all toys sold in the country as per Republic Act 10620, or the Toy and Game Safety Labeling Act of 2013,” Dizon said. 

The group is hoping that their findings will prompt authorities to investigate the sale of toys to protect consumers, especially children, against health hazards.

“We hope that our findings will prompt the authorities to initiate further investigation on the sale of used toys and other children’s products in ukay-ukay stores to protect young consumers against potential hazards to their health and safety,” Dizon said.

“Yes, recycling is fun, but we do not want recycled toys from abroad to contaminate our children’s bodies and harm their well-being and future,” he added. /je

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