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Bon-Ton Stores to pay $450,000 in civil penalty related to error with drawstrings

BY Staff Writer

New York — An issue related to drawstrings has resulted in Bon-Ton Stores agreeing to pay a civil penalty in the amount of $450,000.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission alleges that the fashion retailer knowingly failed to report to the commission that its children’s hooded jackets and sweatshirts were sold with drawstrings through the hood. The penalty agreement has been provisionally accepted by the commission in a 3-0 vote.

Children’s upper outerwear with drawstrings, including jackets and sweatshirts, pose a strangulation hazard to children. CPSC and three U.S. importers announced recalls of children’s jackets and sweatshirts with drawstrings through the hood on February 18, March 10 and May 27, 2010. Bon-Ton was a retailer of about 800 total jackets and sweatshirts in all three recalls.

Federal law requires manufacturers, distributors and retailers to report to CPSC within 24 hours after obtaining information reasonably supporting the conclusion that a product contains a defect that could create a substantial product hazard, creates an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death or fails to comply with any consumer product safety rule or any other rule, regulation, standard or ban enforced by CPSC. Federal law also bars selling products that have been subject to a voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the commission.

In agreeing to the settlement, Bon-Ton denies CPSC staff allegations that it knowingly violated the law.

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Lynn Gust secures top job at Kroger division

BY CSA STAFF

Long time Fred Meyer executive Lynn Gust was named president of the 133 store Kroger division.

Gust, 59, joined Koriger in 1970 as a parcel clerk and most recently served as the company’s SVP of operations. Gust was appointed to that position in 2011 and prior to that he served as EVP of corporate merchandising and advertising. During his career Gust also served as vp of the Fred Meyer food group and SVP of store operations.

"Lynn’s long history with Fred Meyer and deep knowledge of our business will serve our customers well," said Rodney McMullen, president and COO of Kroger. "His passion for our employees and customers make him a great fit to carry on the Fred Meyer tradition."

The Fred Meyer tradition is that of a uniquely positioned retailer who large format multi-department stores defy neat classification although they bear the greatest resemblance to a Walmart supercenter. Stores range in size from 65,000-sq.-ft. to 250,000-sq.-ft. and offer roughly 250,000 products.

Fred Meyer’s headquarters are located in Portland and stores are located in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Alaska. The company has 30,000 employees.

Gust was born and raised in Vancouver, Wash. He is a member of the Portland State University Food Industry Leadership Center Advisory Board; on the board of directors of the Western Association of Food Chains; and on the board of directors of the Northwest Grocery Association.

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Co-inventor of bar code passes away

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK — Norman Woodland, co-inventor of the bar code which transformed global commerce in the 1970s, passed away Saturday at the age of 91 from complications related to Alzheimer’s, according to a Reuters report.

The advent of the bar code reshaped retail decision-making and supply chains and its impact continues to be felt today. Five billion products are scanned optically using the bar code every day, according to GS1 US, the American arm of the global UPC standards body.

Also called Universal Product Code, the handheld laser scanner facilitates consumer product inventories, speeds passengers through airline gates, tracks mail, encodes medical patient information and is in near universal use across transportation, industrial and shipping industries worldwide.

Reuters reported that Woodland is survived by his wife, Jacqueline Woodland, of New Jersey; daughters Susan Woodland and Betsy Karpenkopf; brother David Woodland and granddaughter Ella Karpenkopf, 16.

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