Precious Metals and Gemstones Exempt from Lead Law



The Consumer Product Safety Commission voted Thursday to exempt precious metals (karat gold, sterling, and platinum group metals) and gemstones from the testing and certification requirements for children’s products, inlucindg jewelry, covered by the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act.

The exemption becomes effective upon publication in the Federal Register, which should occur within the next few days, according to Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America.

The commissioners also voted to exempt the following materials sometimes used in jewelry manufacturing: titanium, most kinds of stainless steel, pearls, coral, amber, wood, natural and man-made fibers, bone, seashell, feathers, fur and leather.

The exemptions were granted, provided that the named materials haven’t been treated or changed in ways that would result in the addition of lead. They also do not apply to the non-steel or non-precious metal components of a product, such as solder or base metals in electroplate, clad, or fill applications.

Manufacturers, suppliers and retailers of children’s jewelry containing base metals must still comply with the law.

The CPSC lowered the amount of lead allowed in children’s jewelry from 600 ppm to 300 ppm on Monday.