For those new to this website:
Tamara Rubin is a multiple-Federal-award-winning independent advocate for childhood Lead poisoning prevention and consumer goods safety, and a documentary filmmaker. She is also a mother of Lead-poisoned children (two of her sons were acutely Lead-poisoned in 2005). Since 2009, Tamara has been using XRF technology (a scientific method used by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission) to test consumer goods for toxicants (specifically heavy metals — including Lead, Cadmium, Mercury, Antimony, and Arsenic). All test results reported on this website are science-based, accurate, and replicable. Items are tested multiple times to confirm the test results for each component tested. Tamara’s work was featured in Consumer Reports Magazine in February 2023 (March 2023 print edition).
To read my recent overview article about the reusable glass milk bottles manufactured by StanPac and sold to most American dairies, click here. To read the original article with the test results for the Longmont Dairy glass bottle, click the image above.
Monday – January 2, 2022
My friend and a fellow mama of a Lead poisoned child contacted Longmont Dairy about the Lead paint on their reusable glass milk bottles today. Her exchange with them is below and my response to Longmont Dairy (via Facebook messenger) is below that. Warning: I am a little grumpy today and don’t have time for dismissive corporate greenwashing B.S. – so yes, some swearing… Also (point of clarification) we are calling them (Longmont and StanPac) out based on Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) limits for Lead in items intended for use by children (which is completely relevant since children drink milk from these bottles and hold and use these bottles); their citation of FDA regs (which are as not as strict as the regulatory limit for protecting children from Lead exposure in consumer goods) in the message to my friend below is total BS and deflection.
- Separately (important to note in response to their comments below): XRF testing is 100% accurate and acceptable for testing the paint/surface coating of an item to see if something is in compliance with CPSC regulatory limits for Lead – in fact, the instrument I use is the SAME INSTRUMENT used by the U.S. CPSC.
- Additionally, reactive agent home test kit testing of their Lead-painted bottles (as well as additional lab testing of StanPac Lead painted bottles from other dairies) does indicate that the transference of the Lead paint on these bottles is possible and does happen (especially after many rounds of use/reuse and sterilization between uses – which causes the paint to deteriorate over time), which is (I expect) one of the reasons WHY the Lead painted version of these bottles is illegal in California (and one of the reasons WHY – I expect – Longmont Dairy chose to QUIETLY – and without informing customers – switch to the “optional” Lead-free paint option offered by their bottle supplier, StanPac.)
The note my friend sent to Longmont Dairy
Longmont’s Dickish Response
My message to Longmont Dairy today in response to receiving the above screenshots from my friend. (You can also see my response in screenshot form below – along with their auto-response, which does have their contact info.)
Your message to my reader was really awful. (I want to say “assholic” but I am trying to be polite.) I am not a “blogger,” but I am an internationally recognized award-winning activist for childhood Lead poisoning prevention. The amount of Lead I found on your bottles was NOT a small amount, it was a very large amount at levels far in excess of what is considered illegal in items intended for use by children. The Lead on these bottles DOES migrate, and in fact, your communication indicates that you took the concern seriously enough to change your bottles to Lead-free ink*. But did you send me a thank you note for discovering this for you? No. Did you publish a warning to your customers noting that your bottles had been painted with Lead paint and that you were swapping them out for a Lead-free option thanks to my work? No. Instead, you are dickishly trying to diminish the concerns of my readers (and your customers) in a private message that you hope (I expect) no one will see and call you out on. Well, thanks for that. You could have said, “We’re sorry.” You could have said, “We used to sell Lead painted bottles but we changed things as soon as we learned about this serious issue and we are thankful for Tamara’s advocacy in bringing this to our attention.” You could have done your homework and not just blindly believed what StanPac told you. A reading of 90 ppm Lead and up is illegal in the paint on items intended for use by children. Are milk bottles intended for use by children? That’s your call, really. Coming in at 38,500 ppm Lead in the paint on your bottles – you had a real problem that you fixed because of my work. You are welcome. Jerks. Do you always try to cut down the work of women who make an effort to hold you accountable for doing better for your customers?
*Note: we have not yet confirmed that Longmont’s new bottles are painted with Lead-free paint, although at least one Lead Safe Mama reader is sending me one of these new bottles to test.