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My name is Stu and I am here to share what I can.

7:54 AM

Numbers

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Again, I can't talk about details, and those of you familiar with the story understand why. However, as an independent observation, if a company has a large recall, folks (especially in the major media, who need to sensationalize stories in order to increase viewership for an increase in advertising rates) tend to wig out. But if you look at hard numbers, you'll discover: Mattel has recalled about 15 million toys since 2000. 7 years, 15 million toys. Seems like a large number, right? Except Mattel has sold just about 3.5 Billion toys in the same time period, which means that the recalled toys add up to less than half a percent of total toys. Is there another company that can say that they have a higher success rate than Mattel's 99.5%...???

Oh, and in addition to that, let's remember that the government institution in charge of overseeing the import of toys, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, has fully admitted that downsizing has left them with one hundred inspectors for the entire United States. 2 staffers for every state. Mattel sells about half a billion toys a year, and they are just one company that brings toys into this country. You do the math.

2 Comments:

Melissa said...

Wow, You know I had totally forgotten the potential link to you on the Mattell business. How much of it can we really control? As it seems there are a lot of foreign country policies to go through. Sometimes you can only do so much. Catching it at the other end seems to be a really reasonable way to fix something that couldn't have been fixed first.

Plus, I totally get the percentages. Big numbers are hard to understand. I have personal feelings there, too, as the agency I work for is such a small sliver of our national annual budget, but it's high profile, so we take loads of knocks.

Take care,
Melissa

IMPORTER said...

I have been importing from China for a long time. It is very hard for the firm in the US to controle the paint system in China. A lot of the factories have sub-contractors in small towns. Most of the time you have to count on "good faith"
m

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