A new initiative by the International Council of Toy Industries (ICTI) to help small and medium sized toy manufacturers to produce ethically sourced toys has drawn praise from building toy retailer Click-A-Brick.
The ICTI’s ethical manufacturing program, known as ICTI Care, has launched the Committed Brands Plus initiative, which will provide small to medium enterprises (SMEs) with instant and affordable access to ICTI Care’s database of more than 1,300 toy factories all over the world. The searchable database provides detailed profiles on the various factories’ ethical performance, plus it also provides information on ICTI Care certification audits on the factories.
“Small- and medium-sized enterprises form the backbone of the global toy industry, with research showing that SMEs make up over 90 percent of the marketplace in Europe and the US,” an ICTI spokesman said. “While smaller toy companies may have limited time and resources, their commitment to responsible business practices and to ensuring the wellbeing of workers in their supply chain remains just as strong.”
The ICTI’s new initiative has drawn the attention and praise of building toy company Click-A-Brick co-founders Jason Smith and Georg de Gorostiza, who applauded the move.
“In the toy industry, being known as an ethical company is especially important because parents are always wary about what their kids are playing with,” Smith said. “Small companies don’t always have the resources to thoroughly investigate the factories and plants where their toys get manufactured, so having this database of factories that have already been vetted by the ICTI is invaluable for small and medium sized toy companies that want to make sure their toys are being manufactured in an ethical and sustainable way. We’re glad to see the ICTI offering this resource to companies that may not be able to afford to do their own vetting.”
Smith and De Gorostiza say as a small building toy company, they know how much of a struggle it can be for SMEs to perform their due diligence when trying to locate manufacturers to work with to ensure their factories are using ethical labor and manufacturing practices, which is why the ICTI’s latest move is so welcomed.
With the recent action being taken by the New York Attorney General’s office against big toy companies like Mattel and Hasbro for illegally collecting data on children, it is extremely important for SMEs in the toy industry to do what they can to ensure they are being ethical, the Click-A-Brick co-founders say, to make sure parents have confidence in their products.
For more information, please visit http://www.clickabricktoys.net/