Toy Association Advocacy Leads to Modernized ‘Stuffed Toy’ Law in Pennsylvania

by The Toy Association | 03 Jul 2024


On June 28, Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro signed into law HB 1333, the Toy Association-sponsored legislation that lifts a long-held ban on the use of recycled materials in all stuffed toys manufactured and sold within the state.


The Toy Association’s significant advocacy efforts were instrumental in the Pennsylvania legislature first introducing the bill in June 2023 to amend the outdated 1961 Stuffed Toy Manufacturing Act. The 63-year-old law required all stuffed toys distributed and sold within Pennsylvania to be manufactured using new, virgin materials and therefore did not permit the use of recycled materials in stuffed toys.


“This new law is a major step forward for the toy industry in regard to a long-standing piece of legislation in Pennsylvania,” said Greg Ahearn, president & CEO of The Toy Association. “The ability to use recycled materials in stuffed toys sold in Pennsylvania will have a positive impact on manufacturing, help to reduce waste, promote environmental responsibility, and represents the industry’s dedication to sustainable toy manufacturing. We would like to thank Governor Shapiro and the Pennsylvania legislature for their support in making this update a reality.”


To facilitate the implementation of the legislation, The Toy Association spearheaded efforts to modernize the law on behalf of members and the broader toy manufacturing community. The Association brought its members together, including Build-A-Bear Workshop, Lovevery, Inc., and more, to form a working group dedicated to identifying key policy issues related to the Stuffed Toy Manufacturing Act. This collaborative effort resulted in the comprehensive legislative language that was shared with legislators and ultimately used in the amendment. In addition, ongoing conversations at the Pennsylvania statehouse were instrumental in keeping the legislation at the forefront of lawmakers’ minds and advocating for its passage.


Sharon Price John, president & CEO of Build-A-Bear Workshop and chairperson of The Toy Association stated: “The update to Pennsylvania’s 'Stuffed Toy' law, allowing the use of recycled materials in manufacturing and sales, will not only maintain the stringent regulations designed to ensure the continued safety of toys for children of all ages but, importantly, also enables toy manufacturers to more efficiently and responsibly meet the growing demand for sustainable products.”


Now that activity in Pennsylvania has concluded, The Toy Association will reach out to Ohio to update its administrative law (which relies on Pennsylvania’s registration and law) to legalize recycled filling in stuffed products. Members may contact Charlotte Hickcox, director of state government affairs at The Toy Association, with any questions.

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