Zhu Zhu Pets are OK, says government agency

The Consumer Product Safety Commission says that the hot-selling Zhu Zhu Pets are "safe," according to a number of media reports. The Commission "confirmed today that the popular Zhu Zhu toy is not out of compliance with the antimony or other heavy-metal limits of the new U.S. mandatory toy standard," agency spokesman Scott Wolfson said.

The consumer site GoodGuide recently raised concerns about the hot-selling children's toy, though it has now revised its relatively negative report, which means the cloud of product safety hanging over the Zhu Zhu Pets may be clearing.

Cepia LLC, which makes the toys, said its sales had not been hurt by the rumors about the safety of the products.

It could be that parents, under pressure from children, may be willing to take some risks. But it is more likely that reviews from consumer sites like GoodGuide, which do not have long track records, don't influence buyers, although the negative review was widely picked up by the media. A bad word from Consumers Reports, however, a decades-old reviewer of products, would no doubt have had different results.

The good news about the safety of Zhu Zhu Pets may not matter much. The toys are sold out at most stores. Whatever controversy there was did not hurt Cepia's bottom line.

Douglas A. McIntyre is an editor at 24/7 Wall St.

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