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Pinduoduo's Toxic Toys: The 1st Target of the New E-Commerce Law?

2019/3/15 20:49:48

In 2018, phthalates in products was found to exceed the standard, but Pinduoduo missed the opportunity to check how big the problem might be.

In October 2018, Toxics-free China bought a yellow plastic toy duck with a sales volume of over 100,000 on the e-commerce platform “Pinduoduo”(NASDAQ:PDD) and sent it for quality inspection. The report showed that the phthalates content of the product exceeded the national limit by 150 times. Then, Toxics-free China asked “PDD” to stop selling those yellow ducks with quality problems immediately and conducted a self-inspection. After that, although “PDD” removed those products from its shelves, it did not respond to the self-inspection action.

The phthalates in the yellow toy duck lings tested in 2018 exceeded the standard seriously.

Limit standard for plasticizers in GB 6675.1-2014 ToysSafety - Part 1: Basic Code.

In 2018, Toxic-free China recommended “PDD” to publish information of the inspections for product safety proactively.


Unqualified products showed up in “PDD” again, so consumer safety is still being worried about.

In February 2019, consumers once again purchased 10 plastic toys randomly (one of which had received 27,000 orders) on the e-commerce platform “PDD”, and asked Toxics-free China to send them to a third-party laboratory with test qualification to inspect its plasticizer content.
On March 1, 2019, the test results came out. According to the test report issued by the laboratory,7 of the 10 sets of yellow duck contained excessive amounts of phthalate content compared with the national maximum permissible limit, with the multiple range of roughly 290~417. They are unqualified products.

The test report issued by the third-party testing institution.


Toxics-free China took actions again and complained to the platform and the government.

On March 6, 2019, Toxics-free China called “PDD” for complaints, and sent the recommendation (including the test report of the purchased products), regarding the suggestion to stop selling those yellow ducks with excessive amounts of phthalates and to conduct an over all self-inspection,to the online official customer service agent of “PDD”. At the same time, Toxics-free China emailed the Shanghai Consumers Council and called the Shanghai Market Supervision Administration for complaints.

The recommendation regarding the suggestion to stop selling those yellow ducks with excessive amounts of plasticizer and to conduct an overall self-inspection sent by Toxics-free China.

Screens hot of the online complaint to the ShanghaiConsumers Council by Toxics-free China

On March 12th,2019, Toxics-free China received a text message sent by the Shanghai Market Supervision Administration about dealing with the complaint.

On March 13, 2019,the Shanghai Consumers Council called Toxics-free China to inform the feedback:“We have been involved in mediation. And we know that “PDD” is conducting random inspections. We will urge “PDD” to contact the informer for informing its further supervision and action feedbacks.”

On March 15 2019, Toxics-free China emailed Shanghai and Changning District Market Supervision Administration to urge the supervision of PDD to obey the legal provisions of the  Electronic Commerce Law.

Emailed Shanghai and Changning District Market Supervision Administration Electronic commerce law.

When can consumer safety be guaranteed since “PDD” took palliative measures only?

On March 7, 2019, the online official customer service agent of “PDD” responded that the unqualified products had been taken down. However, 3 of the 10 stores where Toxics-free China purchased those products had started to sell similar ones again.

On March 14, 2019,among the 10 stores where Toxics-free China purchased those products, the plastic toy ducklings had been pulled from its shelves while the plastic toy pig lets were still for sale.

To date, PDD has made no response to the establishment of a self-inspection system. Last year's unqualified products remain the same this year and the disposal of stopping selling is only a palliative measure. Therefore, when will “PDD” establish a self-inspection system and check the quality of the products?


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