When tested with a high-precision XRF instrument, this spoon had the following readings:
Blue enamel of the handle:
- Lead (Pb): 388,800 +/- 48,000 ppm
- Barium (Ba): 16,200 +/- 3,300 ppm
- Selenium (Se): 721 +/- 337 ppm
- Bromine (Br): 217 +/- 90 ppm
- Tin (Sn): 10,300 +/- 2,000 ppm
- Copper (Cu): 28,400 +/- 4,100 ppm
- Vanadium (V): 2,779 +/- 590 ppm
- Titanium (Ti): 5,706 +/- 1,214 ppm
- Silver (Ag): 200,900 +/- 37,000 ppm
- Cobalt (Co): 4,052 +/- 888 ppm
Continue reading below the image.
Bowl of the spoon:
- Cadmium (Cd): 1,117 +/- 363 ppm
- Chromium (Cr): 2,112 +/ 131 ppm
- Gold (Au): 21,300 +/- 1,300 ppm
- Copper (Cu): 81,700 +/- 2,400 ppm
- Vanadium (V): 167 +/- 71 ppm
- Titanium (Ti): 240 +/- 92 ppm
- Silver (Ag): 892,000 +/- 4,100 ppm
XRF testing was done for a minimum of 60 seconds per component, and repeated multiple times to confirm the results. Results are science based, accurate, and replicable.
How much Lead is “too much” Lead?
The amount of Lead that is considered unsafe – and illegal – in a modern / newly-manufactured item intended “for use by children” today is anything 90 ppm Lead or higher in the paint / glaze or coating, and anything 100 ppm Lead or higher in the substrate. Dishes and flatware are not covered by this regulatory standard (even though it is my opinion that they should be — because children obviously also use these items!) Antiques are also not governed by any regulatory standards around their toxicant-profiles (as none existed at the time of their manufacture). If this were manufactured for sale today (especially given it is the perfect size for a child and might easily be considered a “child’s item”) it would be definitely be considered illegal…UNLESS it was, say, labeled as a “caviar spoon” or somesuch — to imply that the item was “clearly marketed as intended only for use by adults” — in which case it would be considered 100% legal (despite containing this high an amount of extremely-neurotoxic Lead)!
The amount of Cadmium in this spoon is also quite concerning, especially since it appears to be in the Gold plating, which has worn off with some of the spoons of this set [where do you suppose that missing Cadmium wound up?]. There are four spoons in this set and test results for each will be reported separately. Currently the U.S. has no Federal law regulating total Cadmium content in consumer goods(!); in Denmark, the Cadmium level (total content level) is considered illegal (in items intended for use by children) at 75 ppm and above. Cadmium is well documented as being carcinogenic to humans.
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