Jerry Storch, 50, who became CEO at Toys "R" Us in February 2006, was the only retailer to appear before a Senate subcommittee during a special hearing on toy safety in September. The following is an edited excerpt of his testimony.
"My wife, Jacquie, and I have five children. On a very personal level, we understand the passion parents have about toy safety. The objective should be to prevent recalls in the future. To our knowledge, the problem was not that testing wasn't happening, or that testing wasn't being done properly, but rather that testing was not done frequently enough. In response, we are requiring that our vendors submit certification of testing for each batch coming to Toys 'R' Us. I also strongly support strengthening third-party testing requirements. Earlier this year, Toys 'R' Us asked Bureau Veritas, a world leader in independent testing, to spot-check and retest products right off our store shelves. In recent months, we have substantially increased these efforts, and this targeted retesting will become a permanent part of our safety protocols."