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Beware of Children’s Holiday Toys that May Contain Lead

Beltsville, MD – WEBWIRE

In November, The Baltimore Sun published an article about high levels of lead found in a children’s jewelry set.  According to the article, the inexpensive plastic pearl necklace with an attached charm and earrings had a lead level that was five times above the permissible amount.
This story reminds parents that with the holidays just a short time away, parents need to be aware of the possibility of lead in some children’s toys. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shared the following about two aspects of toy manufacturing that could expose children to lead. They include:

  • Paint: Lead may be found in the paint on toys. Lead was banned in house paint, on products marketed to children, and in dishes or cookware in the United States in 1978. However, it is still widely used in other countries and therefore can still be found on imported toys. It may also be found on older toys made in the United States before the ban.

  • Plastic: The use of lead in plastics has not been banned. Lead softens the plastic and makes it more flexible so that it can go back to its original shape. It may also be used in plastic toys to stabilize molecules from heat. When the plastic is exposed to substances such as sunlight, air, and detergents the chemical bond between the lead and plastics breaks down and forms dust.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) states that with a few limited exceptions, all children’s products manufactured after August 14, 2011, must not contain more than 100 parts per million (ppm) of total lead content in accessible parts.
“For parents concerned about new imported toys or those manufactured before current regulations were put in place, EMSL offers lead testing of toys and other consumer products,” said Joseph Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Lead poisoning is entirely preventable and the number one way to protect children from lead is to prevent exposure to this toxic heavy metal. EMSL also offers these services to government agencies, manufacturers, importers and retailers.”
To learn more about lead or other environmental testing services, please visit, call (800)220-3675 or email .
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental, indoor air quality (IAQ) and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public.  The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.

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