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Federal Regulators Expand Children's Jewelry Recall over Cadmium Concerns

The McClellan Law Firm

Regulators are warning parents in California, and across the country, to get rid of any "Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer"-themed charm bracelets following test results that showed the pieces contained upwards of 90 percent cadmium - a toxic metal.

These are the latest pieces of children's jewelry to be singled out by the feds in a crackdown on Chinese imports. Concerns were raised earlier this year after an investigation by the Associated Press found multiple pieces of imported children's jewelry to have cadmium content at more than 10 percent of total product weight.

Because of its low cost and the ease with which it can be manipulated, cadmium remains a favorite of Chinese manufacturers. While regulated in painted toys, cadmium is not currently regulated in regards to children's jewelry, even though it has been shown to cause cancer.

The "Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer" pendents, featuring both Rudolph and the abominable snowman, were sold between 2006 and 2009 in dollar stores, and similar venues, across the country. This January, Walmart recalled more than 50,000 "Princess and the Frog" pendents over cadmium concerns.

Still, as a general whole, officials have found children's jewelry to be safe. Instead of instituting a mass recall, regulators have instead focused on pinpointing risks and taking action where needed.

Cadmium can lead to kidney failure, brittle bones and - in children - it can slow brain development. Authorities worry that small children who chew or suck on the jewelry could be exposing themselves to dangerous levels of the toxic metal.