There is no mark or maker noted on this bowl. The owner told me she purchased at a 99 Cent Only Store (in Los Angeles) store about 20 years ago (which would be late-1990s / c. 1999). When tested with an XRF instrument it had the following readings:
- Lead (Pb): 70,200 +/- 2,400 ppm
- Barium (Ba): 1,172 +/- 140 ppm
- Zinc (Zn): 20,500 +/- 800 ppm
- Iron (Fe): 413 +/- 176 ppm
- Vanadium (V): 846 +/- 104 ppm
- Titanium (Ti): 1,748 +/- 179 ppm
Metals not listed were not found to be present by XRF testing. Testing was done for a minimum of 60 seconds. The reading set shown above is the lead level on the white glazed part of the interior (food-surface) of the bowl. When I get a high reading on the undecorated base color of a dish (in this case, the white), I generally don’t take other readings on the decorative components to see if (for some reason) they may be higher lead. The fact that the plain white center of the bowl is high lead is bad enough, and makes me recommend that a dish like this should be tossed.
For context the amount of lead considered unsafe in the glaze, paint or coating of a modern item made today and marketed to be used by children is anything that is 90 ppm Lead or higher. There is no current standard for allowable Lead levels in dishware as detectable with an XRF instrument.
As with all XRF testing, a high positive reading is NOT a definite indicator that the dish may be leaching Lead. It is, however, possible and likely for dishes with this high Lead to leach and I therefore would never eat off a dish like this.
As always, please let me know if you have any question.
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