Now its baby bibs
As if vehicle tires, toys, toothpaste and children's jewelry weren't enough, now it turns out that baby bibs imported from China are frequently poisoned by lead. The vinyl bibs, which often sell for as little as five dollars each and carry illustrations like Winnie the Pooh, are sold at Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us stores. Testing confirmed that they contained as much as three times the allowable level of lead. The importer of the bibs, Hamco Baby Products, encountered a similar problem with bibs it sold in Wal-Mart stores earlier this year.
The disclosure of lead-contaminated bibs was made on the same day that Mattel recalled 19 million toys manufacytured in China, including a die-cast toy car depicting the character "Sarge" in the animated film "Cars". The recalls were necessitated by the use of lead paint and the presence of small powerful magnets that were a swallowing hazard for small children. A Mattel executive acknowledged that "we do realize the need for increased vigilance, increased surveillance". Nevertheless, that "need" will not be enforced by the federal government which refuses to act to more effectively protect children from harmful imports. Keep in mind that studies clearly establish that fewer than ten percent of recalled products are actually removed from the market. The CPSC "is negotiating" with toy industry representatives to conduct broader testing of imported toys. Concerned parents should find cold comfort in that reassurance.