Walmart is committed to selling products that comply with applicable safety laws and regulations. Walmart’s Product Safety Compliance team takes a holistic approach to product safety by educating our buyers and suppliers about the requirements of applicable laws, regulations and standards, contractually obligating our suppliers to adhere to the same, and then testing, verifying and monitoring adherence. Our approach to product safety helps us protect our customers and preserve their trust while delivering quality products at Everyday Low Prices.
Walmart’s Product Safety Compliance team has implemented product safety related processes and procedures which include:
- Monitoring laws, regulations and standards – We research and assess laws, regulations, standards, and other requirements to understand how they apply to the products that we sell.
- Creating and communicating product requirements – We document product requirements based on applicable laws, regulations, standards, and company needs. These requirements are communicated to merchants, suppliers, and approved test laboratories.
- Assessing supplier and product performance – We use objective criteria to assess suppliers and their products, including test failure rates, defect rates, and recalls. We also monitor whether suppliers have required certifications, permits, and registrations.
- Design testing, verification, and monitoring – We develop product testing and verification programs to monitor and confirm compliance with laws, regulations and standards. These programs include establishing retest guidelines and determining failure consequences when test failures occur.
- Managing incidents, removals, and regulatory reporting – When our customers report product safety complaints and incidents, we communicate with the supplier and, when necessary, report to the appropriate regulatory agency. If a product is recalled due to safety concerns, we take steps to restrict the sale of that item at the cash registers.
U.K. Halloween Costumes
The safety of children’s Halloween dress up costumes is of the upmost importance to Asda. Halloween 2017 proved to be a significant milestone in enhancing the safety of our dress up products. The UK Product Safety team led a strategic working group with key business partners across the Asda and George business, 3rd party test houses, and the British Retail Consortium to develop our products and our public-facing materials to educate customers about fire safety. On the content of products, we worked with our suppliers to remove materials from our products that promote the spread of flames and implemented new design features to reduce the risk of burning. By doing this, we ensured our costumes exceeded legal requirements, with every child’s garment passing the additional requirements of the British Nightwear Standard. We also launched a simple, clear policy for our suppliers specifying the safety and regulatory requirements for all dress up products. To educate the public about good safety practices, we worked with West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service to publish information on staying safe during Halloween, including replacing lit candles with a much safer LED equivalent. Going forward, we will continue to work collaboratively as a group to identify ways to continuously improve costume safety in partnership with our key business partners. We will address garment safety at the product concept and development stage. And we will continue to engage with customers to help educate them on how to keep their families safe.