Canadian health authorities have issued a recall of 26,000 Melissa & Doug toys for excessive amounts of barium in the surface paint.
The recall comes as a surprise, since Melissa & Doug has, in its 20-year history, been billed as an alternative to cheap plastic and sometimes unsafe toys sold on the market.
The recall includes the following Melissa & Doug painted wooden toys:
Slice and Bake Cookie Sets, Shape Sorting Cubes and Pound-a-Peg
No recall has been announced yet in the U.S., though the company was ordered to recall other toys back in 2008. The Connecticut company defended its products in the Globe and Mail:
A spokesman for Melissa & Doug defended the Connecticut-based company’s safety record and said numerous tests are done on toys before they’re sent to store shelves. But it’s impossible for any company to be perfect, Rob Iatesta said.
“Honestly, it would be in my opinion a false and misleading statement for anyone at any company to say that there would be absolutely 100-per-cent [safety] achievement absolutely every year forever,” he said.
No word yet on whether there will also be a U.S. recall of these products.
Melissa & Doug is a huge brand, so this recall is nearly as surprising as the recent Maclaren recall.