08/01/2008 - For Immediate Release
Middlebury, VT—A little over a year has past since the first major toy recall and companies, both large and small were sent scrabbling. Some companies were scrabbling to test their products, while others like Maple Landmark were scrabbling to make more products, faster. Maple Landmark saw a dramatic increase in business not only from its wholesale accounts but also from their direct to consumer website.
"Consumers were really shaken," said Mike Rainville, Owner and President, "They did not want to give their children or grandchildren toys that weren't safe but there were several major recalls that reached across many toy product lines so they were at a loss of what to do. We were fortunate to be in the right place at the right time." Rainville added, "we've always been confident about our products but the demand did help us to refine some of our product ideas for 2008."
The new products Rainville refers to are the Schoolhouse Naturals™. These products are specifically targeted at the 0-3 year old with the special understanding these children are "oral explorers." The oral exploration phase of a child's development tends to last until the child is about 3. "The great thing about all of the Schoolhouse Natural products is that none of them have any chemical coatings whatsoever," said Jill Stackhouse, Sales Manager. She goes on to say that "the fact that these toys are geared for the specific "oral explorer" age range makes life so much easier for the parents or grandparents, who are trying to purchase a nice, safe toy." Schoolhouse Naturals makes their decision easy.
Several media outlets that do toy testing for their readers have also already recognized the Schoolhouse Naturals. Creative Child Magazine will announce later this summer that the Shape Sorter Bench has won as Toy of the Year in the Toddler Block Toy category, and the Push N Pulls was selected as a Preferred Choice Award, in Toddler Toys category, by Creative Child Magazine. Push N Pulls, Natural Disk Rattles, Building Blocks and Natural ABC Blocks have also been praised in several blogs, by bloggers who not only understand the value of great toys but also the importance of safe, chemical free toys.
Schoolhouse Naturals offers a variety of toys within the 0-3-year-old range. For the littlest ones, three different styles of rattles are available. Each rattle is scaled just right for infants and growing babies. As the child begins to crawl, the Push N Pulls are designed just for them. A large handle, so the pre-toddler can push the toy along and a string can be added when the child learns to walk. For the 1+ year olds, Maple Landmark offers three different sized sets of building blocks as well as the very detailed Natural ABC Blocks. The 2+ children will enjoy the Shape Sorter Bench, as well as the Natural Maple Scoots. Finally, the Classic Trucks will stimulate imagination and play. Each of the six trucks has people, parts, or tops that are removable. Dr. Toy has recognized the Natural Classic School Bus as being one of the Children's 100 Best and one of the 10 Best Socially Responsible Products for 2007. The entire Schoolhouse Natural toy line has been carefully crafted from locally sustainably harvested hardwood maple, with engraved details where appropriate.
"Even without the recalls, the emphasis on our Schoolhouse Naturals product line for 2008 would still be strong because the product line also meets the needs of the growing "green" consumer," states Rainville. "A renewable, sustainable resource [wood] turned into a carbon sequestering product [toys] by a domestic company [no carbon footprint for transportation] that has a small carbon footprint, using responsible manufacturing techniques [Maple Landmark] is really what consumers are looking for."
For more information on Maple Landmark products or the company, please visit the website at www.maplelandmark.com.
Click on the links below for product images:
Natural ABC Blocks
Push N Pull Bunny
Contact: Barbara Rainville • 800-421-4223
Images available for download, please contact us.