Infant toys and teether made of PVC plastic often leak phthalates (pronounced “thay-lates”) and other toxic substances (see more details in this report on 2003 PVC Report Card on Kid’s Toys Manufacturers).
Non-Toxic brands of infant toys to look for are: Selecta, Haba, Hess and Vilac.
The toys featured here are made of maple wood by the German company Selecta. The wood comes from reforestation programs. Multiple coats of non-toxic, eco-friendly laquers (polypheyl acetate based) are used to paint the toys. The colors do not contain heavy metals and the toys are given a beeswax finish. The glue that is used is low in formaldehyde and contains no plasticizer.
Many of the brands listed above were given the Spielgut award for some of their toys (for example the Pallina toy above).
Spielgut (German for “Good Toy”) is an independent organization created in 1954 to examine and assess toys for safety and design quality.
Their “spiel gut” recommendation signifies that this toy has been tested with children and examined by experts with a positive result.