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UK Government committed to product safety

The government is calling on businesses to join a steering group and work to improve product safety recalls in order to protect consumers.

This announcement forms part of the government response to an extensive review by Lynn Faulds Wood on product safety recalls.

The government will support the development of a business led online ‘centre of excellence’. The website will communicate important information to consumers and allow firms to share best practice and ideas based on their previous experience in managing recalls.

Business Minister Anna Soubry said:

I would like to thank Lynn for her hard work in this complex and important area.

People rightly deserve the assurance that if they buy a product that turns out to be unsafe, this can quickly be rectified. The government places a very high value on consumer safety, but industry also has a crucial role to play in protecting consumers.

I am keen that businesses work together to provide the solutions and improve the systems so we can reduce the number of incidents and keep people safe.

Lynn Faulds Wood said:

I welcome the news that my review and the government response is to be published today (18 February 2016). I look forward to hearing about the development of a steering group to take my recommendations forward and very much hope that my involvement in this important area can be continued.

In response to the review, the government will also work with partners to develop a ‘university challenge’ to help advance creative ideas on consumer safety. There is vast talent across design, media, and engineering students and options will be explored on how this can be utilised to support product safety.

In addition, the government will support a project to explore greater data sharing. By working with stakeholders to map information, gaps can be identified and then better quality information for business and consumers should be available.

Further to these actions, the government is also committed to;

  • supporting a comprehensive review of guidance for businesses and enforcers
  • setting up an industry-led steering group to take forward the recommendations and oversee progress of the actions

Anna Soubry added:

Government cannot act alone. Everyone with an interest in the recall system needs to play their part and we will work to oversee and support this.

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