Report finds more action needed to screen out harmful chemicals

Retailers selling directly to early care and education programs, including child care programs and Head Start, need to do more to screen out harmful chemicals, a new report finds.

The report released by the Getting Ready for Baby coalition, “Selling Safer Products for Early Care and Education,” is the first assessment of these niche retailers who target directly to early care and education programs, including child care and preschools. It assessed policies on chemicals in products they sell, and the transparency of retailers. The report found:

  • While nearly all (22 of 24) retailers use certifications to identify chemically-safer products, only one company applies a broad chemicals policy to all products it sells: New York-based Community Playthings.
  • Another leader, Kaplan Early Learning, offered the most types of certifications in products they sell.
  • On the other end of the spectrum, only for Creative Children were we unable to find any information about chemicals in products or relevant certifications.
  • All of the rest reference at least one environmental or health benefit in some product descriptions.