TOOTHPASTES IN PHOTO HERE Do NOT HAVE LEAD
Yes, Earthpaste Toothpaste DOES have lead. The manufacturer has a prop 65 warning on the label that says it has lead AND I tested the main ingredient with an XRF instrument and found it to have lead in quantities consistent with the company’s statements. Please read the comments on this blog post for more details.
Dedicated to mamas Jessica in San Francisco and Amy in Portland, Oregon.
The following represents some of the worst “greenwashing” I have seen. There is absolutely no “safe level” of lead for ingestion. Toothpaste should be treated like food, with the same regulatory parameters and testing guidelines.
From the “Earthpaste” site (April 8, 2014):
“Like many natural foods (including peaches and pears) Redmond Clay contains the tiniest amount of naturally-occurring lead. There is a natural products exemption to prop 65 (otherwise organic green beans and carrots would be 20 times over the limit!) but because of the way proposition 65 is enforced, it would be impossible for a small company like ours to withstand the cost of any “false positives” from aggressive prop 65 law firms.”
And from the Amazon ad (pictured here – click for larger view):
- “For Kids of All Ages” &
- “Safe to Swallow.”(!)
To my knowledge, while spinach and leafy greens (and other ground-grown calcium rich plant foods) these days may contain lead, “peaches and pears” today do not contain any lead! They are tree fruit, and as such off of the ground—and away from any soil that may contain lead from previous/historic leaded pesticide use.
An image I posted on Facebook in December 2013 of the Earthpaste package, to which one of my followers posted this awesome comment:
Esther Wong wrote: “Lead is natural……. But so are poison ivy, rattle snakes and tornadoes!”*
And the specific warning on this package? “This product may not be appropriate for consumption by children or pregnant women.”
In December of 2013, when we contacted Earthpaste to ask how much lead was in the product, we were informed that Earthpaste had tested their product and it has approximately 11.9 parts per million lead in the clay that that is the base of (and largest ingredient in) the product. [see this PDF from Redmond with their analysis: RedmondClay_MineralAnalysis]
The amount of lead that is considered toxic in water is 15 parts per billion! With 11.9 parts per million—Earthpaste has THREE ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE more lead – way above what is considered safe for something children might ingest daily (especially given it is recommended that kids brush their teeth daily – and at least twice a day.)
I’m sorry, but it’s pretty hard to write in a “professionally calm and neutral tone ” about something like this – it’s a good thing I have an amazing editor (my husband and LSAF Volunteer Communications Director – Leonard Rubin) to tone down my upset!
*Lead is naturally found VERY deep down in the earth (lead mines can be 3,000+ feet below sea level); it was not “natural” in the human environment at all prior to the development of deep mining and metallurgical refinement through smelting. Then, with the industrial revolution (1760 to 1820) it invaded our atmosphere in a much bigger way, polluting the air we breathe and the plants we eat. Along with lead’s introduction into our atmosphere and our daily lives came the widespread disease, misery and death from human exposure to this incredibly potent neurotoxin—leaving long lasting impacts today – more than 100 years later.
These comments are my own and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs or thoughts of other members, board members, sponsors or associates of the Lead Safe America Foundation.