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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Cadmium Tainted Jewelry Pulled from Wal-Mart Stores

Wal-Mart has announced it is pulling one of the lines of Miley Cyrus brand bracelets and necklaces from its stores after tests found the jewelry contained the toxic metal cadmium. The line of jewelry was made exclusively for Wal-Mart and has reportedly been on the shelves since last December. The items were made in China.

Wal-Mart was told of the cadmium-laced jewelry back in February when Associated Press conducted a round of testing on unrelated bracelets, but continued to sell the items to consumers. The company complained that it would be too difficult to test products already on its shelves.

Cadmium is a known carcinogen and long-term exposure can lead to kidney failure, hinder brain development in children, and cause bone softening. Cadmium in jewelry is reportedly safe if worn, but can be dangerous if children bite or suck on the pieces. However, the Miley Cyrus jewelry is not intended for young children, according to Wal-Mart.

Earlier Investigation

The first round of testing was the result of a report that was issued last January, which stated that Wal-Mart and other big chains were selling children's jewelry that were around 90 percent Cadmium by weight. That investigation used an Ashland University chemistry professor to test 13 items purchased at Wal-Mart.

Associated Press then launched another round of testing last month to see which items were still on Wal-Mart shelves around the country. In the eight states where AP reporters looked, all but one of the 13 items were still on shelves.

The importer of the bracelets, Cousin Corp. of America, claims they persuaded one of the Chinese factories it works with to stop using cadmium in its products.

Safety Obligation of Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart and other large chains have an obligation to make sure their products do not harm their consumers. We trust these stores to offer safe products, not products that may give our children cancer or hinder learning. No matter how difficult it is to remove defective products from the shelves, Wal-Mart has a moral responsibility to remove these and any other unsafe products.

If you or a loved one has been injured or made ill by a defective product, please contact the experienced product liability attorneys at the Cochran Firm today. We serve clients nationwide.

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posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 8:50 AM

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