Our Policy and Strategy
Given that toys are primarily played with by children, we need to do our utmost to ensure product safety. To that aim, necessary toy-related safety conditions are determined based on the national requirements of individual countries and voluntary toy-industry standards. However, we note that these conditions are becoming increasingly complex and diverse due to differences in individual cultural, social, and other environments. Furthermore, the growing diversification of toys that accompanies technological progress and social change is further complicating the application of necessary safety-related conditions. While the overall aim is to provide safe toys, we sometimes cannot guarantee safety simply by conforming with national and industry requirements and so we use our past experience and expertise to evaluate and investigate any elements that are not covered in the existing requirements and strive to formulate ever safer toy-making processes.
In accordance with our founding philosophy, the TOMY Group commits to a fundamental quality policy that creates environment-conscious products which people can play with comfortably and confidently and offers good-quality toys that are attractive to customers worldwide. The TOMY Group has formulated internal product safety and quality management rules that systemize the relevant flow across the entire toy-making process from planning through manufacture, and TOMY product quality rules relating to product safety and chemical substances.
●Safety & Quality Assurance Group
The Safety & Quality Assurance Group, under the direct control of our representative director and president, is responsible for managing TOMY Group product safety, quality, and chemical substances. In terms of quality assurance, the Group compiles product quality documents based on the TOMY product quality rules, confirms product quality at every stage of the manufacturing process, and strives to guarantee full compliance with all product safety and quality standards. To ensure product safety, the Group takes all safety considerations into account before commercializing a product to avoid any accidents. In the rare event that an accident does occur, they set up a Risk Management Task Force headed by our president in accordance with our recall rules to plan and implement product recalls, investigate the cause of the accident, and prevent a recurrence.
●Safety & Quality Liaison Meeting
The Safety & Quality Assurance Group holds regular safety and quality liaison meetings, made up primarily of TOMY and Group companies in Japan. The meetings share product-related information, as well as propose and implement initiatives to improve product quality and safety.
●Safety Leader System, Concentrated Play Sessions
Each year, different units within the TOMY Group, including Group companies inside and outside Japan and our development, sales, quality control and customer service departments, assign one safety leader to further strengthen awareness of the importance of safety and product quality. Each safety leader fulfills that role for a fixed period of one year, and new safety leaders are assigned every year. We aim to instill a strong awareness of safety across the entire Group by ensuring many employees serve as safety leaders. Throughout the year, safety leaders work to increase safety awareness in their own departments and participate in Concentrated Play sessions with the aim of pinpointing and ultimately improving any potential safety issues that could possibly happen during play. We have a system in place to immediately implement appropriate improvements in the rare event of a problem being discovered during the play activity.
Product Safety and Quality Management
The TOMY Group strives to ensure safety and preempt any problems by compiling product safety and quality management rules and systemizing their relevant flow across the entire toy-making process from planning through manufacture. Regarding product safety, in particular, the TOMY Group conducts investigations based on our own unique product quality rules, which are stricter than the toy-industry safety standards represented by the Safety Toy mark, to suit global product deployment. Many different customers use toys, but we need to pay particular attention to ensuring safety standards for children that are tailored to suit specific growth stages. To achieve that, each safety standard laid out in the TOMY product quality rules differs depending on the age group they cover, and is set to reduce foreseen risks.
Major existing toy-related safety standards are listed below. The TOMY product quality rules conform to all of these standards.
Japan Food Sanitation Law
ST / Japan Safety Toy Standard
CPSIA / Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act
FHSA / Federal Hazardous Substances Act
ASTEM F963 / American Society for Testing and Materials
Directive 2009/48/EC: Toys Safety Directive
EN71: European toy Regulations
SOR/2011-17: Canada Toys Regulations
GB 6675: National Safety Technical Code For Toys
ISO 8124: International Standard -Safety of toys -)
Please note that there are other regulations in addition to those listed above.
We have thorough safety and quality management systems in place across our entire toy-making process from planning through retail, including design reviews (DR) conducted at each development stage by production technology and product safety and quality personnel, final approval prior to mass production, shipping inspections and acceptance testing. We conduct these tests on all new products and sample inspections of regular existing products. In addition, we confirm the safety of manufactured products by conducting inspections of specific chemical substances, either with each order or over a set manufacturing period.
Toy safety considerations evolve as new toys and new technologies emerge, so we are repeatedly updating our TOMY product quality rules and analysis testing to stay abreast of those developments. We published the 2020 TOMY product quality rules in September 2019.
Furthermore, we focus on developing safety measures from a child’s perspective so that children can enjoy fun, safe play. That means displaying warnings and alerts on product packaging, in product instructions and on our company website that predict how a child might play with a certain toy.
Toys consist of various different parts and materials, so we have to fully consider how a child’s health and environment might be impacted by chemical substances in toy parts and materials. Regulations surrounding manufactured goods and parts included in toys and electrical and electronic equipment differ from country to country, so we determine methods in the TOMY product quality rules for managing harmful chemicals that are required to be eliminated or reduced in countries in which we sell TOMY products, and we share those methods with supplier factories and other business partners.
For instance, we conduct in-house analysis in cooperation with external specialist organizations in order to prevent impurities such as heavy metals or phthalate ester compounds from getting into products. Furthermore, in Europe, we conduct chemical safety assessments (CSA) on parts and raw materials used by partner companies and factories involved in product manufacture in relation to harmful substances required to be eliminated or reduced in the RoHS Directive, the REACH Regulation, and the POPs Regulation. Even in the very unlikely event that a product did contain such impurities, we have mechanisms in place to prevent that product from ever being released into the market. We work tirelessly to ensure consistent product safety and quality management.
We also consider the environmental impact of incineration at the point of disposal and promote the use of non-polyvinyl chloride (PVC) packaging materials. When selecting materials such as polycarbonate and other thermoplastics (which are highly likely to contain bisphenol A (BPA)) for manufactured products that are likely to come into contact with a customer’s mouth, our TOMY product quality rules encourage developers to consider using alternative materials, and aim to avoid using such materials as much as possible.
Training and Awareness Building on Confidence, Safety, and Quality
Through various initiatives specified in our product safety and quality management rules, we seek to promote a shared awareness of safety across TOMY’s global operations. For example, we hold a Safety Day once a year where all Group employees worldwide jointly consider the importance of product safety, quality and control. This activity is designed to ensure adherence to safety standards issued by the toy industry in general and by individual countries, and promote ever safer toy manufacturing. We also hold Concentrated Play sessions roughly once a month where employees get together to play with actual toys from a customer’s perspective. We have a system in place to immediately implement appropriate improvements in the rare event of a problem being discovered during the play activity. Since their launch in 2009, these sessions have been expanded, with similar meetings currently being held across Group production companies in Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, and China.