Letter from Aaron Muderick, Toy Association Chair: Supply Chain Crisis – We’re Here to Help

March 28, 2022 | I’m honored to be The Toy Association’s newly elected chair and look forward to connecting with the broad range of members to learn about the issues impacting your company and how The Toy Association can help. And, as an entrepreneur and business owner myself, I am all too familiar with the challenges many of you face. I know, from personal experience, the struggles of a single-employee toy company as well as those of larger organizations. I value the art of careful listening and want to hear many perspectives.

Supply chain disruptions are an immediate issue of focus impacting our toy businesses, including:

  • ocean freight creating a choke point in transport costs;
  • the impact of shipping challenges on global markets over time;
  • ongoing disruptions caused by the pandemic, including the current lockdowns in Southeast Asia;
  • US-China tariffs on raw materials that are a component in rising costs of global raw materials; and
  • tensions caused by the Russia/China relationship; a destabilized Europe’s impact on selling markets and manufacturing options; and the high possibility of China’s issues impacting other Asian countries.

The Toy Association, from our staff, to the board of directors, to our many volunteer committees, is tackling industry risk points related to shipping and supply chain disruptions, monitoring the latest developments, and planning for the future.

As part of our short- and long-term strategizing, we are actively looking to gauge the impact of the supply chain crisis on your business. Particularly, your thoughts on the diversification of your manufacturing locations. In seeking the input of all members (whether you are a startup, a small- to mid-size company, retailer, or otherwise impacted), I’d like to know: what are your needs? How can The Toy Association be of assistance as you navigate shipping and supply chain issues? Are there other global regions beyond Asia and India where the industry should focus on for manufacturing potential? Rome wasn’t built in a day. How do we find secure places with the right infrastructure and potential to manufacture our goods?

Help us strategize where to put time and resources into this issue to help you develop efficient, diversified supply chains and build resiliency over the coming five, 10, and even 20 years. Please send your thoughts, opinions, concerns, and suggestions my way: crazyaaron@crazyaarons.com.

I look forward to hearing from you as The Toy Association continues to build upon our resources, tools, webinars, one-on-one guidance, advocacy, and everything else we do day-in and day-out to assure the success of all businesses in the toy and play community.

Best wishes,

Aaron Muderick
Chair, Toy Association Board of Directors
Founder & President, Crazy Aaron’s