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EU: New toy guidance document for puffer balls, puffer figures and yo-yo balls published

SEPTEMBER 2019 - Relevant for: Toys & children's products

On 16 September 2019, the European Commission (EC) published a new guidance document No. 181 for puffer balls, puffer figures, puffer animals and yo-yo balls. Owing to the increasing recall cases and varieties present on the market, this document is published to provide guidance for distinguishing and classifying these products.

Such toys are normally made from elastomeric material, which have a soft central part that are easy to pull and press into different shapes.

Summary for product classification


Puffer ball

Puffer figures, puffer animals

Yo-yo ball


  • Soft balls
  • Normally have hair-imitating cord
  • May have prints and/or light source inside
  • Similar to a puffer ball
  • Shaped (e.g. as an animal)
  • Could be confused with traditional soft-filled toys
  • May have a tether
  • With a tether made from an elastic material
  • Intended to be thrown and returned to the hand
  • Requires more ability to play.

Age grade

Children of 36 months and over

Children under 36 months

Children of 36 months and over

[1] No. 18 – Guidance document on puffer balls, puffer figures, puffer animals and yo-yo balls

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