I was reading the paper yesterday, yep, old school, and I came across an article regarding a pending court case here in California.  Our state attorney general is accusing several stores, including: Target, Trader Joe’s, 99 Ranch Market, Island Pacific Supermarket and Whole Foods of selling candy, bulk foods and snacks containing ginger and plum with dangerously high levels of lead.

We just got used to the idea  of lead in our kids’ toys.  Now, it’s the candies, too?  Sigh.

Here’s the kicker.  The stores aren’t facing a lawsuit because they sold the tainted products.  Nope.  The suit states that those named violated California’s Prop 65 because consumers were not informed of the lead.

Sidebar for those of you from out-of-state.  Prop 65 is an almost useless piece of legislation because it requires, among other things, all businesses to put up warning placards when there is anything harmful on the premises.  Now, on the surface being informed that you are entering a business where there are hazardous chemicals seems like a good idea, but the law is written in such a way that everyone has to put up a notice.  Got any cleaning products stashed away? You’ll need to post a sign.  How about glue?  Put up your notice.  Fertilizers and plant food? Yep, you get the idea.  No one pays attention to the signs anymore because you can’t find a business that doesn’t have one up somewhere.

Of course, knowing about the lead in our food?  That’s a time when Prop 65 might actually come in handy.

Asian candies found to contain lead. www.ktsf.com

Asian candies found to contain lead. http://www.ktsf.com

The article explained that there are two main reasons why you may be consuming lead, among other things, economics and liability.  As with the lead-painted toys from China, there is very little oversight involved in Asia’s huge farm industry which leads to contaminated produce.  Since products from Asia are markedly cheaper, stores buy them, and then sell them to YOU.  It is in the stores’ best interest NOT to know about any toxic chemicals in the products that they sell.  If they are unaware then they escape liability.  The usual strategy IF something is discovered involves an apology and a recall.

To read online version of the article I saw just click here.  Spread the word.  The stores, except Target which pulled the affected products, are still selling these items.  Ginger candies are especially popular among pregnant women, as they help with nausea, another reason to make your community aware.

Kind of makes you wonder what ELSE is in your food…

I tell you what, buying domestic and sticking to farmers’ markets is looking better and better.

Time to get to the music as this IS Musical Monday and it is actually happening on a Monday.  What are the odds?  I’ve chosen the song Lies by Thompson Twins from way back in 1983.  Now, I am not accusing businesses of lying, because that never happens, but as one wonders so often these days… what did they know and when did they know it?

Besides, I wanted to listen to this song; call it a whim.


Lyrics to Thompson Twins “Lies”

you told me you loved me
so I don’t understand
why promises are snapped in two
and words are made to bend
(the bigger, the better)
some stolen from Japan
collected from around the world,
they’ll catch you if they can
lies lies lies yeah
lies lies lies yeah
lies lies lies yeah
do i have to catch you out
to know what’s on your mind
well, Cleopatra died for Egypt,
what a waste of time
white ones and red ones
and some you can’t disguise
twisted truth and half the news
can’t hide it in your eyes
you say you’ll try harder
but I think it’s just too late
well, the car is revving in the drive,
and I’m not the sort to wait
the bigger, the better
some nicked from old Saigon
collected from around the world
love lies on and an and on and on and on and
lies lies lies yeah (they’re gonna get you)
lies lies lies yeah (they won’t forget you)
lies lies lies yeah (they’re gonna get you)
lies lies lies yeah
oh you know I know
oh you know I know

This post was written by Erika Gardner.  If you enjoyed it, please sign up to receive updates on this blog.  Or you can follow Erika on Twitter @Erika_Gardner or “Like” her Facebook page Erika Gardner- Writer and Storyteller.