LANSING, Mich., Oct. 7, 2021 — This week, state Rep. Julie M. Rogers (D-Kalamazoo) introduced House Bill 5374 , which would regulate the lead leachate levels for tableware. Leaching occurs when a chemical substance, such as lead, moves from an object or surface to a liquid when exposed. This includes lead leaching into drinks or food after coming in contact with tableware.
“As a practicing physical therapist, I have firsthand knowledge of the dangers that leaching can cause,” Rogers said. “One of my patients experienced balance issues that progressively worsened despite our best attempts to treat the issue. It wasn’t until a heavy metal panel blood test was performed that we became aware that my patient was experiencing the side effects of lead exposure from a coffee mug he drank out of every morning that was painted with lead-based paint. This bill would ensure that the tableware we use every day would be further protected from lead exposure so others can avoid similar health complications.”
The United States Food and Drug Administration currently regulates the amount of lead that is allowed to leach from tableware, but only to a certain degree. HB 5374 would set the acceptable lead leaching levels from tableware below what the FDA has established. This will result in a much higher level of safety and take the necessary next steps to ensure the protection of our friends, families and community members from the dangers of lead exposure.