12 October 2007 | Paul Snell
The British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA) has launched an advice group to help buyers that trade with China.
Following recent concerns and scares over sourcing in the Far East (News Focus, 23 August), the member organisation has set up a China Trade Advisory Group to provide support and share advice with members.
The group will be chaired by four of the BPMA's board directors: Stephen Barker, Margot Parker, John Mallows and Gill Thorpe, who all have experience in sourcing from and dealing with Chinese suppliers.
The group intends to provide guidance on identifying and selecting suppliers, examining and checking product specifications, risk assessment, and the latest European regulations on Chinese products.
Barker said: "Recent news scares have raised many questions in the minds of brand managers about manufacturing overseas. We want to help buyers understand and have renewed confidence in what they buy and where it comes from."
This week Starbucks became the latest high-profile firm to begin a voluntary recall of products made in China. The coffee chain has recalled 250,000 children's plastic cups sold in US stores between May 2006 and August this year, because of fears the cup could break and cause a hazard to children if dropped.