WASHINGTON D.C.: Democratic U.S. lawmakers introduced legislation on Friday to reduce the levels of toxic heavy metals in baby food.
Manufacturers will have one year to comply.
Entitled, the Baby Food Safety Act of 2021, the bill would set maximum levels of inorganic arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury in baby food and cereal.
Additionally, levels will fall further within two years, with guidance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and in three years through regulation.
Also, manufacturers will be required to test final products. Currently, manufacturers only test ingredients for heavy metals. All test results will be required to be posted online.
Representatives Raja Krishnamoorthi and Tony Crdenas, along with Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tammy Duckworth, introduced the bill.
“For too long, industry has been allowed to self-regulate baby food safety, and the results have been appalling and extremely harmful to our kids,” Krishnamoorthi said, as reported by Reuters.
Earlier in March, the FDA announced it would increase its sampling of baby foods, as well as overall inspections after Krishnamoorthi’s House oversight subcommittee released a report finding “dangerous levels of toxic heavy metals” in some baby foods.
The FDA said in a statement that it was developing a “plan aimed at reducing toxic elements in foods for babies and young children to levels as low as is reasonably achievable.”