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Heavy Metal Cadmium In Children’s Jewelry

Heavy Metal Cadmium In Children’s Jewelry

Much of the children’s jewelry sold on the shelves of clothing and accessories stores contains levels of the heavy metal cadmium. A number of top retailers in the U.S. have agreed to stop selling any jewelry that has more than light amounts of the heavy metal.

The Center for Environmental Health sued more than a dozen retailers in 2010, claiming that they were exposing children and adults to high levels of the toxic substance without labeling the jewelry, as required by California law.

Image:© Rafal Jozwik |           Following the outcome of a legal settlement in California, retailers are voluntarily recalling jewelry across the country, even though the standard is higher than that set out by lawmakers in other parts of the United States.  Currently, there is no federal standard that limits cadmium in jewelry.

Despite the fact that cadmium does not get as much recognition as lead, or mercury, it is an extremely toxic heavy metal. Long term exposure to cadmium can lead to respiratory, kidney and bone issues, including kidney failure and extreme osteoporosis leading to frequent fractures. Kidney damage caused by cadmium exposure is not reversible. Cadmium also causes cancer, and it remains in the body for years.

In 2010 Cadmium was found in the entire line of Miley Cyrus jewelry at Wal-Mart. The jewelry had been tested by request of the Associated Press. 

Following the December 31st, 2011 ruling in California, stores like Saks, Gap and Target have asked suppliers to limit the amount of cadmium in jewelry. 

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