I heard from Laura Benson, who I wrote about last week in a story about lead-poisoning prevention. She’s the new mother who had a cooler, designed to keep bottles of breast milk cold, tested for lead. The testing by a city of San Diego employee revealed lead was present in the cooler.
Benson, a policy advocate at the National City-based Environmental Health Coalition, e-mailed to say she’d spoken with Carr Lane Quackenbush, president of Medela Inc., the Switzerland-based company that manufactured the cooler. (The company’s U.S. subsidiary is based in Illinois.)
Quackenbush called Benson to follow up after the story ran.
They are going to arrange for me to send them my cooler so they can do tests and determine what to do.
He would not commit to contacting me with the results of the testing and talked a lot about finding out the “allowable levels” of lead, the best ways to test and how much lead is present. In general, they seem like a fairly responsible company, but I have concerns about the follow up and will keep in touch with them to see what they do about it. I made it clear that my goal was to see them take some action to notify people who have these coolers and to ensure that they start using only lead-free products.
We’ll keep following this.