Study: Lead detected in baby food samples

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A new report released found that a 20 percent of baby food samples had detectable levels of lead. (AP Photo / NHS Lothian)

A new report released by the Environmental Defense Fund found that a surprising amount of baby food samples had detectable levels of lead.

The study found the lead through an analysis of 11 years of federal data.

Out of 2,164 baby food samples, 20 percent contained the toxic metal.

The toxic metal was most commonly found in grape juice samples (89 percent), sweet potatoes samples (86 percent), and teething biscuits (47 percent).

The study does not mention the brand of each sample.

The Food and Drug Administration has a guidance level for lead of 100 parts per billion for candy and dried fruit and 50 parts per billion for fruit juices.

"The levels we found were relatively low, but when you add them up - with all the foods children eat it's significant," says study author Tom Neltner of the Environmental Defense Fund.

At very high levels, lead can kill developing brain cells or be fatal. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there is no known safe level of lead for anyone to eat, drink or breathe in.

The Environmental Defense Fund doesn't say that parents should necessarily avoid certain products, but they do advise parents to talk to their doctors about risks of lead exposure.
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