Health Canada announced a forced recall on RaceORama Cars Glazed Dinner Plates on December 4, 2009, due to excess levels of cadmium, a highly toxic heavy metal. The plates, intended for children, have been distributed in Canada by Enesco Canada and sold in Zellers stores since March 2009.
The cadmium-loaded dinner plates are marked with item number MF2534 and UPC code 065992386716. The image on the front of the plate displays a bright red car and the words: “RaceORama” and “Thunder After Lightning.”
Health Canada advises that cadmium is a highly toxic substance that builds up in the body over time. Exposure to cadmium is known to cause gastrointestinal disruption, stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea, kidney damage and, in some cases, death. Consumers should immediately discontinue the use of these dangerous plates and return them to the store for a full refund.
Health Canada determined that the plates contain levels of cadmium in excess of the allowable limits through their sampling and evaluation program, a newly revitalized program concentrating efforts on evaluating the safety of children’s products for hazardous substances.
This sampling and evaluation program also recently prompted extensive recalls on 3 very popular Melissa & Doug toys and a children’s play ironing board distributed by Schylling’s Little Helper Collection for excess levels of barium. More information on these recalls can be found here.
Overshadowed by news in the U.S. on concerns involving lead in children’s products (e.g. the recent children’s jewelry recall), the Canadian recalls are particularly worrying because for most toxic metals, the Canadian requirements are less stringent with higher permissible levels of toxic substances and less rigorous testing methods employed to evaluate the product.
More information on the recall for Enesco RaceORama Glazed Dinner Plates is available on Health Canada’s website.
More information on cadmium and its toxic effects: A Consumer’s Guide to Toxic Metals – Cadmium