The founder of a company that produces the nation’s largest wholesale show that strictly features functional and decorative artwork handmade in the U.S. and Canada, says that the recent rash of recalls is raising consumer awareness about the higher safety and quality of American-made products.
Wendy Rosen, founder and president of The Rosen Group, Baltimore, which produces the semi-annual Philadelphia Buyers Market of American Craft, says that consumers should feel safe about buying American-made products, especially from artists.
“There’s no need to question a product’s safety when you personally know who made it or sold it to you,” Rosen said. “We are again seeing the extreme detrimental effects of foreign imports. Just this year, there have been recalls of toothpaste, dog food and toys made in China. Are consumers also at risk when buying cheap home décor and art at big-box retailers? I’d say it’s likely, given the current situation.”
Amy Shaw of Greenjeans, Brooklyn, N.Y., says she has seen an increase in questions about the safety of the handmade wooden toys she sells in her craft gallery.
“Parents are losing trust in mass-produced toys. They are throwing out what they have and looking for alternative sources for toxin-free toys made closer to home,” says Shaw.
Consumers have recently seen a wave of recalls of Chinese made products, including children’s toys, toothpaste, pet food, tires and other consumer goods.
The Rosen Group also publishes AmericanStyle magazine, the nation’s premier lifestyle publication for art lovers, collectors and travelers, and NICHE magazine, a trade publication for craft retailers.