In October 2022, the Executive Yuan's Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) sampled and conducted inspections on 10 reclined cradles. Labeling check results showed that five cases were in violation of the Commodity Labeling Act, and nine cases did not meet the National Standards, CNS 15982 “Child use and care articles − Reclined cradles.” Furthermore, the quality of three items did not meet the above mentioned National Standards. The Central Region Office of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) urged local authorities to handle vendors in violation of the Commodity Labeling Act in accordance with the law. Meanwhile, the Bureau of Standards, Metrology and Inspections (BSMI), MOEA had provided counsel on how to make improvements to vendors that failed to meet the National Standards in quality inspections or labeling of product information.
In light of recent incidents involving reclined cradles abroad, the DCP had taken measures to protect children’s rights by randomly purchasing 10 different brands of commercially available reclined cradles from brick-and-mortar stores and online platforms. The Taiwan Center of R&D and Testing for Commodities was commissioned to conduct quality inspections based on the National Standards mentioned above. Additionally, the product labeling inspection was conducted by the Central Region Office and the BSMI.
The results of tests and inspections were as follows:
I. Labeling check
(I) Commodity Labeling Act: Five products failed to meet requirements.
1. Not labeled in accordance with the “Labeling Criteria for Electrical Appliances and Electronic Goods”: Three products.
2. Labeling of the country of origin was inconsistent: One product.
3. Incomplete labeling of manufacture date: One product.
(II) National Standards: Nine products failed to meet Section 7 regarding labeling of product information (including product labeling, purchase information, and user manual).
Main deficiencies: Failure to meet Section 7 of CNS 15982 on labeling of product information, e.g., warnings on “the maximum weight of child suitable for product,” or that “this reclined cradle is not intended for prolonged periods of sleep.”
II. Quality inspection: Conducted inspection pursuant to the National Standards
(I) Structure: Three products failed to meet the requirements. The main deficiencies were finger entrapment and slippage of the reclined cradle.
(II) Material properties (chemical properties and flammability): All met the requirements.
(III) Packaging with non-permeability materials: All met the requirements.
The inspection results of this case were reported to the Consumer Protection Committee (CPC) for resolution: Apart from requiring major sales channels, such as maternity and baby supply stores and e-commerce platforms to strengthen the promotion of the correct usage of reclined cradles, the competent authority, i.e., the MOEA, will also incorporate permanent labeling pursuant to the National Standards in media and magazines coverage for raising awareness. Moreover, permanent labeling will also serve as a major inspection item for spot checks in the future.
Reclined cradles have been incorporated as items subject to inspection since November 1, 2022. Warnings such as the permanent label of maximum weight (under 6 or 9 kg) of a child for which the reclined cradle is intended for, “this reclined cradle is not intended for sleep,” and “do not leave children unattended,” are pertaining to the weight limit and usage method, which are crucial for the safety of children. Therefore, when purchasing or using reclined cradles, the DCP would like to remind consumers the following:
I. When purchasing the product, pay attention to the manufacture date. Reclined cradles manufactured after November 1, 2022 will bear a commodity inspection mark, in which their quality is under government supervision.
II. When using reclined cradles, pay attention to the following matters:
(I) Take note of the weight limit of the product to avoid the risk of children tipping over.
(II) Reclined cradles are child care products designed for caring or soothing children who cannot sit or stand on their own. They are not intended for children to sleep in. If a child falls asleep in a reclined cradle, he or she should be immediately transferred to a safe sleeping environment with a firm and flat surface (e.g., a crib) to ensure that the child maintains a supine position when sleeping.