Attorneys General Petition FDA Over Heavy Metals in Baby Food

Oct. 25, 2021
Attorneys general from 23 states are petitioning the FDA to take action against high levels of heavy metals in baby food.

Attorneys general from 23 states are petitioning the FDA to take action against high levels of heavy metals in baby food.

New York Attorney General Letitia James and 22 others signed the petition, presented to the FDA on Oct. 21. It urges the FDA “to move expeditiously to set limits for arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury in baby foods.”

Heavy metal levels in baby food, a concern for years, reached a peak in the wake of a report from a consumer group in 2019. The situation has led to lawsuits and attention from lawmakers.

The legal situation is ambiguous, partly because arsenic is the only of the four heavy metals that even has a regulatory limit in baby food – and that one, at 100 parts per billion, is 10 times the limit for drinking water.

The FDA has already announced a program for phasing in limits on heavy metals in baby food that will stretch into 2024. The letter from the attorneys general urged that the schedule be moved up to no later than next April.