Consumers in California should be able to trust that the products they purchase have been designed and manufactured in ways that result in them being safe for use or consumption. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. At any given time, people can – and should – visit the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission’s website. There, they can view a list of recalled products. 

Product recalls may be voluntary or involuntary. The voluntary recalls may be initiated by a manufacturer, distributor or merchant. An example of a voluntary recall includes some sushi that was recently pulled from the shelves of multiple, prominent grocery stores according to ABC News. In the case of this recall, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration became aware of a potential contamination and alerted the manufacturer. The manufacturer, in turn, made the choice to remove the products from store shelves. 

In some cases, products are allowed to be marketed and sold even if they are identified as posing hazards to consumers. At this time of year, many people actively shop for special toys for kids. Fast Company recently reported on some of the most dangerous toys that are on the market this holiday season. Some of these toys pose hazards to the eyes, such as a Nerf blaster with a 120-foot range. A hedgehog with plastic quills, a yeti with very long hair and a slimy frozen food toy are all identified as opening up the risk for unintended ingestion which would result in injuries. A very long pull cord on an animal toy exposes kids to being tangled in the cord or even to strangulation.