Government report says baby foods found with high levels of toxins failed to be recalled by manufacturers

A new government report out Wednesday from the House Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy finds more cases of major manufacturers selling baby food with high levels of toxic heavy metals, just eight months after a congressional report shed light on the issue of toxins in baby food. The report describes dangerous levels of arsenic, lead, cadmium, mercury and other toxins, which can be particularly dangerous to developing babies and toddlers.

Investigators said two of Gerber’s Infant Rice Cereal products contained inorganic arsenic levels over the Food and Drug Administration’s limit. They said Gerber “failed to recall” those products. Most of Plum Organics’ products contained heavy metals too, including popular Superpuff snacks.  Illinois Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, the chairman of the economic and consumer policy subcommittee, said: “No level of toxic heavy metals and exposure to them is safe for a baby.”  Krishnamoorthi wants stronger federal standards, saying of the manufactures: “They haven’t so far shown either the capacity or the willingness to regulate themselves. You need a federal regulator in the form of FDA to be regulating them closely.”

The FDA’s “closer to zero” program would set allowable federal levels for some heavy metals, but final guidance isn’t scheduled until 2024.  Krishnamoorthi wants to have some of those timelines moved up, but the agency said “it’s crucial that measures to limit toxic elements in foods do not have unintended consequences.”