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Children's Health

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Lead Dangers Prompt Toy Jewelry Recall

Children's Jewelry Sold in Vending Machines May Pose Lead Poisoning Risk

WebMD Health News

July 8, 2004 -- Federal officials are asking parents to search their children's jewelry boxes in one of the largest recalls in history.

In cooperation with the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), four toy jewelry importers today announced a voluntary recall of more than 150 million rings, necklaces, and bracelets sold in vending machines across the U.S.

Tests conducted by the CSPC have shown that the toy jewelry may contain dangerous levels of lead.

Young children are prone to putting these items in their mouth or swallowing them, which may cause lead poisoning. In children, lead poisoning can result in behavioral problems, learning disabilities, hearing problems, and growth retardation. Very high levels can lead to coma, convulsion, and death.

"With millions of pieces of jewelry involved in this recall, I urge parents to search their children's toys for this jewelry," says CPSC Chairman Hal Stratton, in a news release. "Throw away this recalled toy jewelry."

The CPSC has not received any reports of lead poisoning or illness associated with the products involved in today's recall. However, officials have received one report of lead poisoning when a child swallowed a piece of toy jewelry containing lead that was previously recalled.

Recalled Jewelry Sold Between 2002-2004

The toy jewelry involved in the recall was sold in vending machines located in malls, discount, department, and grocery stores nationwide from January 2002 through June 2004 for between $.25 and $.75.

The CPSC says only about half of the 150 pieces of toy jewelry being recalled actually contains lead. But because it is difficult to distinguish lead jewelry from nonlead jewelry, the toy jewelry industry decided to recall all of it.

The recalled jewelry includes many styles of rings, necklaces, and bracelets.

  • Rings. The rings are gold- or silver-colored with different designs and paint finishes with various center stones.
  • Necklaces. The necklaces have black cord or rope or gold- or silver-colored chains; they have pendants, crosses, or various geometrical designs or shapes with or without gemstones.
  • Bracelets. The various styles of bracelets include charm bracelets, bracelets with medallion links, and bracelets with faux stones.

All the recalled toy jewelry was manufactured in India.

To view pictures of the recalled jewelry or learn more about the recall, visit the CPSC's web site or

Parents are urged to look for toy jewelry in their homes and throw any of the recalled items away.

The four toy jewelry importers involved in the recall are: A & A Global Industries, Inc., of Cockeysville, Md.; Brand Imports, LLC, of Scottsdale, Ariz.; Cardinal Distributing Co. Inc., of Baltimore, Md.; and L. M. Becker & Co., Inc., of Kimberly, Wis.

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