The Australian toy industry has long been dominated by one company: Hasbro.
But now that company has come under fire for not paying suppliers for their work, including the use of child labour in Australia’s toy industry.
A new report by Australia’s Toy Industry Alliance (TIA) has called on Hasbro to pay suppliers for labour they’ve already supplied.
Read more: Toys that have been recalled: TIA director, Chris Beattie, told News.au there was an “underlying theme” of “fraud” in the toy industry, where suppliers were “selling their products to unsuspecting customers”.
The report found there was “a widespread belief that toy manufacturers do not pay their suppliers for any of their work” and that suppliers were generally paid a flat rate for work they already provided.
The report found some of the largest suppliers in the industry – including Hasbro and Bally – “do not pay suppliers at all” for their labour. “
But the issue is, as we found in our research, that there’s no system in place to ensure that suppliers are paid for the cost of the labour they provide,” Mr Beatties said.
The report found some of the largest suppliers in the industry – including Hasbro and Bally – “do not pay suppliers at all” for their labour.
TIA said the Australian toy market is “saturated” and said the majority of toys were made in Australia.
“The majority of Australian toys are made in China, Japan and other Asian countries, where labour is cheap and labour conditions are appalling,” the report said.
“In Australia, we are still dependent on a handful of big global brands, with some very large multinationals, like Hasbro, that dominate the market.”
We found that, despite this, the toy sector in Australia is still heavily reliant on overseas suppliers and this is despite the fact that many of the Australian consumer’s choices are made by children who are under the age of five.
“The report also found that Australia was not a “leader” when it came to protecting children from harmful work.
The report said that the number of child workers in the manufacturing and distribution of toys in Australia was “not particularly high”.
Read More: Why are some toys recalled after they’ve been recalled?”
Our research showed that only a very small number of Australian companies actually pay their workers for the use that they’ve previously provided,” Mr Brant said.”
The vast majority of suppliers don’t provide any of the children who work for them with the opportunity to do that.
“He said Hasbro’s decision to recall more than $1 billion worth of toys over a 12-month period was “unbelievably poor”, as well as the fact “some of the products were so well-received and well-loved that Hasbro was forced to recall a significant number of its toys”.”
This isn’t just about a toy, it’s about the children and their families,” Mr Braett said.
Read more about toy industry in our section on child labour.”
There are serious questions to be asked about the behaviour of Hasbro about the safety of the toys that they’re manufacturing and selling and there’s a need for them to pay for this.
“The Toy Industry Association of Australia (Tia) said it was “extremely disappointed” to see the report’s findings.
Its president, Peter Taylor, said there was a “significant gap” between Hasbros standards and the Australian toys industry.
Mr Taylor said the company was “totally focused on ensuring the safety and welfare of our customers”.”
We have a zero tolerance policy for child labour, including child labour within the supply chain,” he said.
He said the industry was working with the Government to improve the way it works with suppliers, and that Hasbot had a “good track record”.
Mr Braett called on the Government and other suppliers to “move forward with a strong, strong system” to ensure children are protected in the supply chains of their products.