Another recall of children’s jewelry with high levels of the toxic metal cadmium was announced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission last month. Inspectors at ten of the nation’s largest ports are now screening children’s jewelry – typically imported from China – for cadmium. The surveillance and detection program has now been expanded through the use of special guns that shoot X-rays into jewelry to estimate how much cadmium each item might contain.
The agency announced the voluntary recall of about 19,000 “Best Friends” charm bracelet sets made in China and sold exclusively at the jewelry and accessories store Claire’s, which has more than 3,000 stores in North America and Europe.
While the CPSC does not release its results, testing done for the AP revealed that bracelets sold at Claire’s contained up to 91% cadmium by weight, and shed alarming amounts during a test that examined how much cadmium children might be exposed to if they accidentally swallow the charms. “Cadmium is toxic if ingested by children and can cause adverse health effects,” the agency said in its recall announcement. Medical research shows that cadmium in high levels is a known carcinogen and can harm kidneys and bones.
Consumers should take the bracelets away from children and return them to Claire’s for a replacement or refund, according to the announcement. The bracelets were sold for about $12. The CPSC identified the manufacturer as Dae Yeon Industries Corp., of China. The recall was the third prompted by AP’s investigation. Before this year, no consumer product in the United States had been recalled because of cadmium.
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