Placer County Health and Human Services Director Dr. Richard J. Burton is advising county residents not to use lunchboxes originating from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) that may have been distributed at county facilities. Dr. Burton is also asking that the lunchboxes be returned to the county. This advisory comes as a result of an announcement Sept. 20, 2007, by the state that three of the lunchboxes have tested for elevated levels of lead.
In Placer County, the lunchboxes were distributed through four Women, Infants and Children (WIC) offices in Roseville, Auburn, Lincoln and Kings Beach. WIC and Health and Human Services staff will contact their clients and ask that any lunchboxes that were distributed out of the four offices be returned to that office. County staff will then properly dispose of the lunchboxes.
The green canvas lunch boxes that showed elevated levels of lead have a logo reading EAT FRUITS & VEGETABLES AND BE ACTIVE. Approximately 56,000 of these lunch boxes have been distributed throughout California at health fairs and other events.
In addition to the lunch boxes that tested positive for lead, the state has used other lunch boxes as nutrition education items for the Network for a Healthy California Program and the Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC). These lunchboxes are blue. Although they have not shown elevated levels of lead, the state recommends consumers stop using them, keep them away from young children and dispose of these lunch boxes as a precaution. In Placer County, the lunchboxes should be returned to the WIC offices where they were distributed. The state is conducting additional testing on these lunchboxes. Approximately 300,000 lunch boxes have been distributed statewide.
It should be noted that there have been no known cases of lead poisoning related to the lunchboxes.
Click on these links for additional information from the State of California about this recall and lead poisoning in general: