Toy industry splits as phthalates ban re-emerges

An EC scientific committee has hardened its view that phthalate plasticisers used in soft PVC toys give cause for concern, reigniting the debate about the need for an emergency ban on such toys. Elsewhere, the Canadian Health Ministry has advised retailers to withdraw PVC teethers and find alternatives to soft PVC in other toddlers' toys over the next six months. And Toys "R" Us has become the latest major US retailer to announce a worldwide withdrawal of teethers and other "direct-to-mouth" products containing phthalates.

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