When a parent is feeding their kid they want to believe that the FDA is doing their job, and not letting anything harmful onto the shelves. They might be doing their own due diligence and buying only organic baby food brands or those with the simplest ingredients.
This week, a new report revealed the scary fact that there's a problem in the chain of production. Multiple popular baby food brands have high levels of toxic heavy metals—and the Trump administration knew all about it.
The report was released on February 4th this year from the subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives and titled "Baby Foods Are Tainted with Dangerous Levels of Arsenic, Lead, Cadmium, and Mercury." These are all metals that can cause damage to brain development, especially in young children and babies.
Amongst the offending brands with this issue were Nurture (Happy Family Organics, HappyBABY), Beech-Nut, Hain Celestial Group (Earth’s Best Organic), Gerber, Campbell Soup Company (Plum Organics), Walmart (Parent’s Choice), and Sprout Organic Foods, according to The Hill.
The fact is, this has been an ongoing issue, and people don't want the topic to be hushed again:
In the report, the subcommittee says the FDA gave Trump and his administration a "secret" presentation in August of 2019 about how the way baby food ingredients are tested does not indicate what the metal levels will be in the final product. They recommended testing at the end of the process.
Do you think Trump prioritized not poisoning babies? Nope!
To make matters more creepy, the report says these are their findings on just the brands that submitted their data to the subcommittee. Campbell, Sprout, and Walmart, which they fear implies something even worse going on with their baby food. Buyer, beware.
What are "safe" toxic metal levels?
Well, lots of vegetables contain these metals, which they absorb from the ground and water. That's why environmental cleanliness isn't just a niche issue. It affects everything we eat, including the most vulnerable among us.
Subcommittee Chair Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi told CNN that there shouldn’t be "more than single-digit parts per billion of any of these metals in any of our foods."
The numbers they got showed hundreds of parts per billion.
The recommendation from the committee is that the FDA review the dangers of these metals to babies and demand evidence that the final products coming from these baby food brands are at "safe" levels. They also want labels for the consumer, so they can choose to feed their baby cadmium or not.
What might be most important now is just spreading the word. People deserve to know what's in their infant's food.
Featured image via Unsplash/hui sang @linsyorozuya