Toys"R"Us, Inc. today unveiled a national program that provides customers the opportunity to trade-in used cribs, car seats and other baby products in
Company's "Great Trade-In" Event Encourages Parents to Exchange Used Cribs, Car Seats and Other Baby Products at Babies"R"Us and Toys"R"Us Stores Nationwide
August 27, 2009 // Franchising.com // WAYNE, NJ - Toys"R"Us, Inc. today unveiled a national program that provides customers the opportunity to trade-in used cribs, car seats and other baby products in exchange for savings on a new item. The "Great Trade-In" event is designed to call attention to the fact that, due to safety concerns, certain used baby products, such as car seats and cribs, are not the best candidates to be handed down or resold.
Safety experts have recently reported that sales of used products are on the rise and are warning consumers to be cautious about purchasing second-hand children's items. The "Great Trade-In" event places an emphasis on specific old or second-hand baby products that may be potentially unsafe, but are still in circulation. According to consumer advocacy organization Kids In Danger (KID), in general, less than 30% of affected items are returned when a baby product is recalled. Beyond recalls, certain older and used baby products can raise other concerns. This could include products that have been damaged or others where advances in product safety have rendered older models non-compliant with the latest standards.
During the "Great Trade-In" event, which begins Friday, August 28 and continues through Sunday, September 20, all Babies"R"Us and Toys"R"Us locations nationwide will accept returns of any used cribs, car seats, bassinets, strollers, travel systems, play yards and high chairs in exchange for a 20% savings on the purchase of any new baby item, in any of these product categories, from select manufacturers.
"In today's economy, we are all looking for ways to stretch our dollars, but in doing so, children's safety should not be compromised," said Jerry Storch, Chairman and CEO, Toys"R"Us, Inc. "We hope this program will help raise awareness of the importance of being vigilant about potentially unsafe children's items that may still be in the marketplace, while encouraging customers to use the 'Great Trade-In' event as an opportunity to remove used baby products, such as cribs and car seats, from their garages and attics."
Safety agencies, such as the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), have noted that it continues to be challenging to get dangerous products out of the home following a product recall. The CPSC advises parents to check its website, www.cpsc.gov, to make sure a product has not been recalled before using or purchasing it second-hand. In addition, parents should be aware that used baby products can raise other safety concerns. For example:
- Federal and voluntary standards and regulations for safety testing, particularly for cribs, have changed significantly over the past few years, and older products may not have been produced to meet these stringent requirements;
- Car seats can sustain damage in an accident that may not be visible to the naked eye, but could prevent the seat from functioning properly;
- Car seats have expiration dates, as the materials can deteriorate over time, potentially making the car seat less effective in a crash. Parents can check with the car seat manufacturer to determine the recommended period of use for a particular car seat;
- Certain baby products, particularly car seats, are regularly introduced with new innovations in technology that can improve the products' safety efficacy;
- Products made of or that contain certain materials, like wood and plastic, for example, can deteriorate when exposed to extreme weather conditions, like heat, potentially compromising safety integrity; and
- Parts or instruction books for proper assembly, installation or use may be missing.
It can be difficult for consumers to determine whether used baby products are safe, and with so many ways to purchase used products, it's important for parents to be informed and vigilant when making purchasing decisions. And, because consumers often do not know the history of a second-hand baby product, leading safety organizations such as Safe Kids USA recommend not purchasing used car seats, for example. Additionally, the CPSC advocates not purchasing used items that have a history of safety problems, including cribs, play yards and bassinets.
Manufacturers participating in the "Great Trade-In" event include Baby Cache, Babi Italia, Baby Trend, Bertini, Britax, Chicco, Contours by Kolcraft, Cosco, Delta, Eddie Bauer, Evenflo, Graco, Jeep, Nature's Purest by Summer Infant, Safety 1st and Sorelle. Customers can save 20% on a new purchase, from any of the specified product categories and from any of the aforementioned manufacturers, in Babies"R"Us and Toys"R"Us stores nationwide on the day they trade in their used item. Day care centers or other organizations who wish to exchange items in bulk are encouraged to contact their local Babies"R"Us or Toys"R"Us store prior to returning their used items to ensure adequate availability of new merchandise.
Customers can visit the company's Safety website, Toysrus.com/Safety, for the latest information on product safety and to sign up to receive product recall notifications by e-mail.
About Toys"R"Us, Inc.
Toys"R"Us, Inc. is the world's leading dedicated toy and baby products retailer, offering a differentiated shopping experience through its family of brands. It currently sells merchandise in more than 1,500 stores, including 847 Toys"R"Us and Babies"R"Us stores in the United States, and more than 700 international stores in 33 countries, consisting of both licensed and franchised stores. In addition, it sells extraordinary toys in two FAO Schwarz stores in the United States. With its strong portfolio of e-commerce sites including Toysrus.com, Babiesrus.com, eToys.com, FAO.com and babyuniverse.com, it provides shoppers with an unparalleled online selection of distinctive toy and baby products. In addition, the company operates ePregnancy.com, an online resource for parents. Headquartered in Wayne, NJ, Toys"R"Us, Inc. employs nearly 70,000 associates worldwide. The company is committed to serving its communities as a caring and reputable neighbor through programs dedicated to keeping kids safe and helping them in times of need.