China syndrome: Companies might have to think twice about overseas plants
This is not the first time. It is not even the second time. And even scarier — this is the second major news item in less than a year.
The recent announcement that toy manufacturer Mattel will have to recall millions of toys manufactured in China because they pose a potential threat to children is the second such warning within the month.
And all of that comes on the heels of recent scandals involving dog food and toothpaste made in China.
The idea behind sending some manufacturing overseas is that it can be done cheaper. In the case of Mattel, the exact opposite could be true.
Perhaps considering “quality” a little more than “quantity” will become an important factor in some companies’ future business plans.
But in the meantime, there seems to be ample evidence of non-existent manufacturing standards in China. When there are multiple violations, there is reason to be concerned — and to take action.
Items that are geared toward children require extra scrutiny — and U.S. companies need to increase testing, standards and requirements immediately.
A better balance sheet is not worth the risk.
Published in Editorials on August 14, 2007 12:46 PM