Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Toxic Toys for Tots

Canada Puts BPA on Official Toxics List

Bisphenol A (BPA), toxic at low doses, has been linked to obesity, prostate cancer, breast cancer and early puberty in girls. Wal-Mart Canada and other major Canadian retailers in recent months began removing baby bottles and sippy cups that contained BPA from store shelves, as have some U.S. retailers.

Canada has become the first country to classify bisphenol A (BPA) as toxic, placing it on its list of toxic substances. This will restrict the importation, sale and advertising of baby bottles made with BPA. Canadian lawmakers were especially concerned with BPA's health effects on newborns and infants.


Stay Safe With Your Christmas Giving This Year

To be safe, it is recommended that you discard soft plastic toys and grooming articles that do not fall into one of the exceptions listed below. When purchasing new items, look for phthalate-free toys and make sure retailers know phthalate-free merchandise is important to you.

Soft plastic toys that young children put in their mouths may contain phthalates unless they are marked "phthalate-free," "PVC-free" or "EU compliant," or they carry the CE mark (which indicates that the product is compliant with European Union regulations and therefore phthalate-free).

Both teethers and pacifiers sold in the United States are supposed to be phthalate-free already, though parents should purchase these items from reputable retailers.

Recycling codes (if toys have them) may help you determine if the items are made with PVC, which often contains phthalates.

PVC plastics are marked #3. Better choices are codes #1, #2 or #5. The Breast Cancer Fund recommends that people also avoid plastics marked #6 (styrene) and #7 (“other,” but often BPA-based).

Take Action

I just sent an email to the Consumer Product Safety Commission demanding that it enforce the new ban on toxic phthalates in toys. Please join me in letting the CPSC know that we will not accept toxic toys infiltrating the market and putting our kids at risk! To take action, go to visit the Breast Cancer Fund site.



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