Submitted by: Mattel, Inc.
Posted: Dec 09, 1999 – 11:00 PM EST
Mattel, Inc. (NYSE:MAT) today announced that it is bringing together a consortium of the world's most innovative materials developers and consultants to formally begin investigating newly developed, environmentally friendly, and organically based materials for its products and packaging. Mattel's mandate to these firms is to identify materials that are derived from organic and renewable sources while maintaining the safety and structural integrity of the company's products.
In keeping with its long-standing tradition of providing the safest products possible, this transition to new and organically derived materials will be made only after extensive quality testing to assure child safety and regulatory compliance world-wide. No new material will be introduced unless it meets or exceeds the safety performance of current plastics including resistance to micro-organisms, pliancy to avoid injury and the strength required to prevent hazards such as small parts, sharp points or sharp edges. Durability under extreme play patterns and environmental conditions must also be guaranteed. However, the company remains committed to following through with this course of action as quickly as technology permits.
According to Rich Molyneux, senior vice president of Quality & Operations Technology, “At a time when consumers around the world are increasingly interested in purchasing products manufactured with organic and environmentally sustainable ingredients, we believe that technology is now emerging that will enable us to answer that demand within our toy lines. There are many new and exciting materials in development that will offer alternatives to traditional plastics with equal or superior characteristics. Mattel is committed to incorporating them into its product lines.”
The company intends to begin the introduction of products produced from organically derived materials as early as 2001, based on extensive research in 2000. As the viability of these new technologies is confirmed, their use will be expanded into all brand categories and product lines.
On a related issue, Mattel has already made significant progress in addressing concerns raised by various environmental organizations, as well as retailers, by eliminating the use of phthalates in mouth toys intended for children under 3. While the scientific evidence still strongly supports the safety of phthalates, Mattel felt compelled to address the concerns of environmentalists, retailers and consumers until the debate concerning the safety of phthalates is resolved.
Mattel, Inc., is a worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of family products. Headquartered in El Segundo, Calif., Mattel has offices and facilities in 36 countries and sells its products in more than 150 nations throughout the world.
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