The Reject Shop Ltd - s.87B undertaking

Company or individual details

  • The Reject Shop Ltd
    006122676

Undertaking

The ACCC has accepted court enforceable undertakings from The Reject Shop Ltd (The Reject Shop) concerning the supply of an unsafe children’s toy, the Knights Playset, and a cosmetic product that did not have ingredients listed on the product container or located at the point of sale.

The Reject Shop supplies cosmetics and children’s toys to consumers via its retail outlets throughout Australia.

Knights Playset

Consumer Protection Notice No. 13 of 2007, introduced on 19 September 2007, declared children’s toys unsafe where there were accessible materials with a lead migration of more than 90 milligrams per kilogram when tested in accordance with Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/NZS ISO 8124.3:2003: Safety of Toys, Part 3: Migration of certain elements.

The effect of the notice is to place an interim ban on the supply of such products for a period of 18 months.

Section 65C of the Trade Practices Act 1974 (TPA) prohibits a corporation from supplying goods where there is a current Consumer Protection Notice declaring the goods to be unsafe.

As part of a routine survey of retail outlets ACCC staff purchased and tested samples of the Knights Playset sold by The Reject Shop. The tests indicated that the paint on the Knights Playset had lead migration levels greater than 90mg/kg.

In August 2008 the ACCC advised The Reject Shop that the Knights Playset contained excessive lead migration levels and that it was considered to be a banned good. In response, The Reject Shop ceased supply of the product, destroyed stock in its warehouse, directed its stores to remove the product from sale and display a public notice, and conducted a voluntary recall of the product via a posting on the Product Recall website.

Cosmetic Ingredients

The Trade Practices (Consumer Information Standards) (Cosmetics) Regulations 1991 require, amongst other things, that cosmetic ingredients be listed in descending order by volume or mass on the container, or if the product is not packed in a container, on the product, or if this is not possible because of the size, shape or nature of the product or container, a list of product ingredients must be shown in another way that ensures a consumer can be informed about the ingredients of the product.

Section 65D of the TPA prohibits a corporation from supplying goods that do not comply with the requirements of a prescribed consumer product information standard.

As part of marketplace monitoring ACCC staff purchased from The Reject Shop a cosmetic product described as Universal Wipes. The product was supplied within a plastic container. The ingredients of the product were not listed on the plastic container or located at the point of sale.

By supplying the Knights Playset as outlined above, The Reject Shop acknowledges that it has contravened section 65C of the TPA. By supplying the Universal Wipes without a list of ingredients as required, The Reject Shop acknowledges it has contravened section 65D of the TPA.

The Reject Shop has undertaken to the ACCC that it will:

  • ensure that goods supplied by it that are subject to prescribed safety and/or information standards under the TPA comply with the relevant standard;
  • publish a notice in The Australian Newspaper about the excess lead in the Knights Playset and offering consumers a full refund; and
  • establish, implement and maintain a Trade Practices Compliance Program for 3 years, and provide reports about the program to the ACCC.