People often hang candy canes and other edible treats on their trees at Christmas, but gift importer O Widmann and Company's tree decorations are inedible and have subsequently been branded as 'dangerous' and 'illegal' and banned by health and safety officials.
The London based firm sells a variety of decorations that imitate sweets including candy canes, lollipops, cupcakes and mint humbugs which officials believe pose a threat to children.
The products first came to the attention of councillors in East Riding of Yorkshire where they were being sold in garden centres. Officials claimed that the products, if eaten by children, could perforate or obstruct the digestive system, cause suffocation or poisoning.
Now trading standards officers are inspecting Christmas retail outlets across the country and seizing any products which breach EU trading laws.
The products sold by O Widmann and Company are a lollipop tree garland, a tree topper and star tree decoration. These are being recalled and the company is offering a full refund to affected customers.
Councillor Jane Evison, of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: "I would urge people to think twice before using any decorations which could be mistaken for food. They present a serious risk to anyone, especially children, if they are accidentally chewed or swallowed and could potentially ruin someone's Christmas celebrations."
The council's trading standards manager Colin Briggs said: "These types of product are illegal and must not be sold as they present a serious safety risk to children. I would urge all retailers of Christmas decorations to check their stock and remove any that look like food immediately. If you are in any doubt contact trading standards who will be able to advise you further."
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