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McDonald’s Recalls Shrek Glasses Over Cadmium Risk

With the highly anticipated Shrek 3 film hitting theaters, McDonald’s capitalized on the frenzy by offering Shrek-themed drinking glasses to customers.  Overall, more than 12 million had been distributed.  But before you guzzle down a tall glass of milk, keep in mind that a major recalled was just issued for the glasses due to cadmium exposure.  As a Seattle injury lawyer, I often see product recalls issued for risks of e. coli poisoning, lead contamination or a choking hazard, but cadmium exposure isn’t something I hear about too often.

According to this article, the Shrek character designs painted on the glass’ exterior contains trace amounts of the chemical, as pointed out by an anonymous tip to a California State Representative who then contacted the CPSC.  Luckily, no one has reported any injuries as of yet, but it does raise concern over proper product testing.  How is it that this wasn’t caught until an anonymous person performed their own test?

If you’re wondering what the health risks of cadmium are, here are a few basics.  The chemical actually occurs naturally in all the food we eat, but particularly in shellfish.  Your body will build up cadmium over time so it’s important to eat a well balanced diet so you don’t over consume the chemical.  Cadmium exposure can lead to lung damage, vomiting, diarrhea, bones loss, kidney disease and possible even cancer.  Unfortunately, symptoms don’t usually manifest until later in life when you may experience bone fragility or the other illnesses.

Kirk Bernard