As always, there are loopholes in legislation that appears to be a good thing. In August, President Bush signed into law a ban on lead, cadmium and phthalates in products marketed to children under 12 years of age.
The reduction in the amount of lead that will be considered safe on Feb 10, 2009 will remain in place and any children’s product with lead levels higher than the safe amount on Feb 10 will be treated as a hazardous product.
So what about phthalates? For some reason, these will be treated differently. That reason is purley an economical one. But products containing the banned phthalates will still be found on shelves and legally sold as long as the product was produced prior to the Feb 10, 2009 date.
Read the entire article from the Washington Post.
So what is a parent to do?
1. Avoid plastic toys, especially vinyl ones where phthalates are typically found.
2. Read labels. Some manufacturers may label the product phthalate-free. If not, don’t buy.
3. Visit my safe toys list and find manufacturers who no longer use phthalates.
4. Opt for safer personal care products, like California Baby to avoid phthalates in the bath.
5. Look for a manufacturing date on the product before you buy it. If one is not listed, do not buy it.