There has been a lot of chatter recently with numerous calls to SmartCollecting.com from all over the U.S. about Princess the Ty Beanie Baby that was a charity release over 13 years ago and raised over $21 million for the Princess, Diana of Wales Memorial Fund. Some eBay sellers are attempting to get millions of dollars for this purple Beanie Baby that is adorned with a white rose on her chest. Unlike the notable Ty Beanie Baby Peanut the royal blue elephant that was only produced for four months, the Princess Beanie Baby was manufactured for nearly two years before retiring in April of 1999.
While there are currently 500 auctions on eBay for a Ty Princess Beanie Baby, some eBay sellers are attempting to raise interest in a first edition Princess Beanie Baby by posting outrageous buy-it-now prices.. as much as $2 million. Yet, there is great confusion about what defines a 1st edition Princess Beanie Baby since it was produced in Indonesia and China and was made with either PVC Pellets or PE Pellets.
A current search on Ebay revealed, that only 34 auctions noted PE Pellets in the auction title and just 15 noted PVC Pellets.
During the first week of July 2011, two Princess Beanie Babies with PVC pellets made in China have sold on Ebay. One sold for $59 and the other sold for $125 including shipping. Both were mint with mint tags.
As of July 5, 2011, Ty Princess Beanie Babies with P.E. Pellets can be purchased online from BBToyStore.com for $4.99.
Some eBay sellers claims that P.E. pellets was the first version explaining that this was a tag error which was later corrected. They also claim that Ty explained this at the 1998 New York Toy Show to dealers.
To understand the difference between a Princess Beanie Baby with PVC versus P.E. Pellets, please consider the following documentation:
On November 29, 1997, Ty introduced the Princess Beanie Baby.
On January 20, 1998, the following news story was viewed on the CQS Health and Environment website:
"Are Beanie Babies Toxic?
This is from the label on Zip, a Beanie Babies Collection stuffed animal:
HANDMADE IN CHINA, ©1993 TY INC, OAKBROOK, IL, U.S.A.
SURFACE WASHABLE ALL NEW MATERIAL
POLYESTER FIBER & PVC PELLETS
PVC (short for PolyVinyl Chloride) often produces cancer-causing vinyl chloride monomer, which is the base chemical from which PVC is made. In addition, the conditions under which vinyl chloride and PVC are made are perfect for the formation of dioxin, so that PVC is often heavily contaminated with this super-toxic chemical. Finally, if these PVC pellets are burned in an incinerator or fire, large amounts of dioxin can be formed.
What You Can Do
Avoid buying any toys that are made from PVC. (All plastics are somewhat toxic, but PVC and other chlorine-containing plastics are the most toxic.) If you have toys made from PVC, such as Beanie Babies, put them aside and find substitute toys as soon as possible that are made of less-toxic plastics or from unpreserved natural materials. Limit children's exposure to PVC as much as possible; never allow children to keep PVC toys with them while sleeping.
There are several toy manufacturers that produce beanbag animals which contain much safer polyethylene pellets, if your children are really desperate for them, such as Bean Sprouts.
Businesses will not change their ways unless people speak out. Send a letter to Ty, Inc., the manufacturer of Beanie Babies, asking that they stop using PVC beads. You can send them this feedback via the Internet, by pointing your browser at http://www.ty.com/beanie/info/input.html which provides a fill-in form, originally designed for kids to tell Ty, Inc. how wonderful Beanie Babies are. Or you can send a card or letter via U.S. Mail to P.O. Box 5377, Oak Brook, IL 60522. They do not list a phone number."
One year later in January 1999, CQS reported that Ty had switched to P.E. Pellets:
"TY Goes Non-toxic!
As a result of discussions between TY, the manufacturer of Beanie Babies, and Greenpeace USA, regarding the toxicity of PVC (short for PolyVinyl Chloride), TY has decided to use polyethylene pellets in all of its stuffed animals. This is a historic event - making toys less toxic and removing one more source of deadly dioxin from manufacturing and disposal (incineration) of PVC.
PVC often produces cancer-causing vinyl chloride monomer, which is the base chemical from which PVC is made. In addition, the conditions under which vinyl chloride and PVC are made are perfect for the formation of dioxin, so that PVC is often heavily contaminated with this super-toxic chemical. Finally, if these PVC pellets are burned in an incinerator or fire, large amounts of dioxin can be formed.
What You Can Do
Show your support for this positive change by sending a letter to TY, Inc., the manufacturer of Beanie Babies, thanking them for converting to polyethylene beads. You can send them this feedback via the Internet, by pointing your browser at http://www.ty.com and sign the "guest book" which provides a fill-in form. Or you can send a card or letter via U.S. Mail to P.O. Box 5377, Oak Brook, IL 60522. They do not list a phone number."
AboutBeanies.com also reported, "In 1998, Ty stopped using PVC pellets in favour of using PE pellets as these were considered to be more environmentally friendly. Beanies with PVC pellets tend to be more rare and often a little more valuable. This is especially true for Princess with PVC pellets."
Check the tush tag to find out if your Princess Baby was made with PVC pellets or P.E. Pellets. If it was made with PVC pellets, it may be the first version. If it is made with P.E. Pellets, it may be the second version.
Since PVC Pellets are considered toxic and this is the rarer of the two versions, you might want to consider parting with this bear. Don't forget to note PVC Pellets in your auction title.
SmartCollecting.com's Ultimate Interactive 2011 Price Guide for Ty Beanie Babies
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