China has published a blacklist of substandard toy jugs and children's shoes sold at Wal-Mart stores and drawing pens from French retailer Carrefour in a quality sweep on children's goods sold at Beijing supermarkets.
China has been buffeted by food, drug and other product safety scares in past months. More than 20 million toys made there have been recalled worldwide over the past four months.
In response, Beijing has promised to crack down on faulty manufacturers and suppliers, but also said much responsibility lies with foreign regulators and buyers. It has also made a point of naming foreign companies it claims also have problem products.
A Wal-Mart Stores Inc spokesman, Jonathan Dong, said the blacklist -- which appeared on an official Web site on Thursday -- was more than two months old and the products, made in China, had long been cleared from the shelves.
Inspectors had also blacklisted children's toys at Wal-Mart stores in Beijing for problems regarding parts that could come off and cause harm if swallowed, the Beijing Administration for Industry and Commerce said on its Web site (www.hd315.gov.cn).
The 54-item blacklist also included substandard children's glasses, toothbrushes, building blocks and bikes with shoddy brakes and handlebars, at a number of Chinese retailers.
If consumers have bought the substandard goods, with proof of purchase they can request the vendor to recall the goods, the notice said.
Six children's products stocked at Wal-Mart branches in Beijing had failed to meet standards, the notice said.
Wal-Mart's Bo bo brand of water jugs had failed plastic integrity standards, according to the notice.
Over a long period of use, toxins could accumulate in the body and cause harm, the notice said.
Wal-Mart spokesman Dong confirmed the blacklist and said the retailer had been notified of the quality results. He said he was not sure why the notice had appeared on the Web site on Thursday.
I guess they just wanted to be transparent about it, he said.
Dong said any versions of the products now on sale had been deemed safe, but customers with doubts could nonetheless return them.
Last week, Wal-Mart was one of 20 companies sued by the California attorney general and Los Angeles city attorney for manufacturing or selling toys with unlawfully high levels of lead.
Chinese-made Carrefour drawing pens were found with excessive levels of lead and chromium. A Carrefour spokesman contacted by phone was unable to provide immediate comment and requested an e-mail of questions.
The Chinese producer of the bead toys that caused recalls in the United States and Australia has apologized for using a toxic date-rape drug and damaging the reputation of the made-in-China label, state media said on Thursday.
Vice Premier Wu Yi arrived in Guangdong on Wednesday for secret spot checks on food safety, Hong Kong's South China Morning Post reported.
She heads one of 12 inspection teams that were checking hundreds of outlets on Thursday, officials were quoted as saying.