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Group Finds Toxins in 1 out of 3 Toys

Do you ever wonder about the toys you purchase for your children?  Exactly what is in that plastic toy?

The Ecology Center, a non-profit group based in Michigan in the United States, tested numerous toys on the shelves in the United States and found that 1/3 of the toys tested contained lead, arsenic, and other chemicals.  They also found that there was no correlation between where the toys were made and the prices of the toys and the amounts of chemicals found in those toys.  For example, toys made in the United States had just as much chemicals as toys made in China. Expensive toys had just as many chemicals as inexpensive toys.

I admit, since the recall of many toys made in China last year due to high lead levels, I thought that I’d be safe if I just avoided Chinese toys.  It was a bit disheartening to find out that despite my efforts (it’s not that easy to find toys made outside of China), my children may still be playing with toxic toys.

According to the group, infant bath toys and books were especially full of chemicals.  I had planned on buying my son some tub toys for Christmas, but I may hold off.  New laws go into effect in February in the United States which ban certain plasticizers in toys.  These chemicals make the plastic more flexible and are used in making vinyl books and tub toys.  As my son puts almost everything in his mouth at this stage, it concerns me that he might actually be ingesting some toxic chemicals from his toys.

What is a concerned parent to do?  This year, I’m doing a bit more research online before I decide on what toys to purchase for my son.  I’m also researching natural toys—toys made without chemicals or toxins.

Are you worried about toxins that are in toys?  What steps are you taking to protect your children?

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