On July 13, 2010, the government announced a safety recall of over 130,000 metal necklaces, bracelets and earrings due to excessive levels of the toxic chemical cadmium. This jewelry was sold for use by children – cadmium is toxic once ingested, and reportedly can cause adverse health effects. These children’s products were made in China, and sold in the U.S. by Tween Brands, Inc. of Albany, NY. The recall covered many different styles and shapes of jewelry, such as “hearts, heart locks, butterflies, cupcakes, peace signs and crowns.”
Unfortunately, this recall and many others like it highlight the need for continued vigilance by consumers. Chemicals and leadin toys and other children’s products are critical issues that have received much publicity in recent years, and families should not overlook these “hidden” hazards while shopping. Toxicity of children’s playthings is a serious hazard that unfortunately can only be detected with sophisticated equipment. However, understanding the types of products that have been associated with prior safety alerts and recalls can be helpful in rooting out some potential dangers and protect children from personal injury.