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Monday March 12, 2018

Changing Sales Methods Are CPSC's Challenges with Imported Fakes

CPSC's congressional testimony March 6 on counterfeit imports hit the perennial theme of whether resources are matching challenges. Import surveillance director Jim Joholske told (bit.ly/2FkbnR1) members of the Senate Finance Committee that despite the agency's ongoing focus on "prioritized large ports," direct-to-consumer and e-commerce sales are an increasing worry.

 

He explained:

"The volume of these shipments, and the limited amount of data required when the shipment arrives in the United States make targeting difficult. With CPSC’s small size and limited resources, we currently do not have investigators stationed at locations where these small packages arrive, other than at one location at JFK airport. However, CPSC will continue to evaluate its staffing model to identify efficient ways to target and examine potentially unsafe products shipped directly to e-commerce consumers."

On the other hand, Joholske pointed to a recent seizure of counterfeit toys to promote established work with Customs and Border Protection at that agency's Commercial Targeting and Analysis Center (CTAC) via CPSC's RAM (risk assessment methodology). Last month, the agencies' cooperation led to the seizure of 2,800 units deemed not only to be counterfeits but also to have lead content and small parts violations. This was at the Port of Los Angeles.

 

Joholske did not field Senators' questions. Those went to the representatives of CBP, UL and the Government Accountability Office (see related story). A video is at bit.ly/2oOPQp0.