Amazon FBA news for the week commencing 18th November 2019 make sure you subscribe for all the Amazon FBA seller news
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number 1. Amazon hit by undercover Dispatches Documentary in the UK leading to sellers being gated from categories.
Amazon has been under fire in recent years over the conditions their staff work under in the fulfilment centres.
This is not exactly news but a new channel 4 dispatches documentary in the UK had something different to share which seems to have had a knock on affect for Amazon FBA sellers.
Dispatches tested 5 products in the toys and games category to see what they contain.
All of these toys were listed on Amazon as toxic and chemical free.
But a chemical known as DEHP which is used to make plastics soft was found in 3 of these toys supplied by Amazon FBA sellers
Phthalate also known as DEHP is a chemical that can cause infertility in men and products containing this chemical are under strict rules about how much they can contain in the European union and the USA .
The level set by the EU 0.1% but one of these toys, a rubber duck had over 30% the legal level when tested
thats a staggering 300 times the legal limit and yet it was still listed on by the FBA seller as toxic free.
In the documentory Professor Laurence Harwood, director of chemical analysis at Reading University said:
“Children when they play with these toys, put them in their mouths and just by in fact handling them they can absorb the [phthalate].
“They look harmless, but the phthalate will dissolve in the fat in your tissues and you can absorb it through the skin.”
The documentary makers reported this issue and the products concerned to Amazon who then removed the products from sale.
In a statement for the documentary a spokesman for Amazon said
“Dispatches have refused to provide us with the test reports for these products. Customer safety is our top priority and we have removed these products from sale while we investigate.”
Now this documentary would have been filmed a few weeks ago and the report to Amazon would also have been before the filming finished.
There have been a lot of Amazon FBA sellers complaining in recent weeks that they have been kicked out of toys and games category in multiple Amazon marketplaces
You have always had to have permission to sell in toys and games in Q4 over the holiday season previously but a lot of these sellers were already un gated and met the required metrics Amazon set out for the holiday season
Some of these sellers have been selling for years and have now all of a sudden been told they must request to sell in this category with detailed reports of their products along with supplier information and invoices has come as a bit of a shock.
What are your thoughts? Is Amazon going to start moving towards trademarked brand registered sellers to protect themselves from liability? Leave a comment below
Number 2 – Amazon Vine for all brand registered sellers?
Amazon Vine program is a program exclusively for vendors to allow them to do product givaways legitimately on Amazon and get early reviews for their products.
Experienced reviewers and buyers can get early access to products sometimes before release for free so they can review the products ready for launch.
Amazon Vine seems to be a response to the crack down on sellers doing givaways which are against Amazon terms of service and a lot of sellers were shutdown or had reviews removed a few months ago in response to the policy change.
Amazon knows sellers want these early reviews and the early reviewer program has been successful but Vine is an evolution of this allowing sellers to give their product away for free in return for a honest review.
Some eagle eyed sellers have noticed that Amazon Vines policy in the US now says brand registered sellers are able to apply for Vine although no one has been able to successfully do this it is unlikely to be an error.
It would make sense to extend Vine to brand registered sellers, Amazon seems to be favouring brand registered sellers and this could be yet another perk to give brand sellers the edge over casual sellers.
What do you think? Were you caught up in the givaway fiasco? Leave a comment below
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