Friday, February 26, 2010

NEWS: Cadmium in children's and adults' jewelry

Associated Press
2 stores pull necklaces on toxic cadmium concern
By JUSTIN PRITCHARD , 02.04.10, 06:40 PM EST

LOS ANGELES -- The teen fashion chain Aeropostale and outlet stores of upscale Saks Fifth Avenue have pulled from shelves necklaces that an environmental group's tests showed have high levels of the toxic metal cadmium.

Aeropostale, Inc. (ARO - news - people ) went one step further, saying Thursday that from now on, no amount of cadmium will be acceptable in its jewelry - and that suppliers will have to prove products are clean with independent lab testing.

If you are interested in risks potentially posed to human health by exposure to cadmium or its compounds, please click here: TOX-PROFILE: Cadmium and Compounds, CAS No. 7440-43-9 to go to the purchase page for the Cadmium Tox-Profile prepared by Dr. Michaels. This toxicological profile is offered for sale by the Center for Health Risk Assessment and Management.

The announcements are the latest fallout from an Associated Press investigation which last month reported some children's jewelry is contaminated with cadmium, a known carcinogen that also can harm bones and kidneys.

In response to that reporting, the California-based Center for Environmental Health tested adult jewelry bought at stores including Aeropostale and Saks ( SKS - news - people )' Off 5th outlets, and this week threatened to sue the retailers after lab results showed between 25 and 75 percent of the items' total weight was cadmium.

The announcement from Aeropostale was significant because it represented the first time a company has said it is effectively banning cadmium in adult jewelry. Aeropostale has more than 900 locations in the United States and Canada.

Cheap metal jewelry worn by children and typically imported from China has to date been the focus of reaction by federal regulators, lawmakers and retailers. Kids are of particular concern because they bite or suck on jewelry and thus are more likely to be exposed to any cadmium it contains.