By law, no more than 75 parts per million of cadmium is supposed to be present in paint on kids toys. The amount found on the glasses was quite a bit higher than that.
McDonald’s said the glassware was evaluated by a third-party laboratory accredited by the CPSC before its roll-out and was found to be in compliance with existing standards for levels of cadmium. But now they say it's not safe.
Cadmium is a known carcinogen that research shows also can cause bone softening and severe kidney problems.
Exposure to cadmium has become a hot topic in the US among consumers as well as lawmakers.
McDonald's said people who purchased the glasses should visit its web site at www.mcdonalds.com/glasses
starting June 8 for instructions on how to return the glassware and obtain a refund. Customers also may call its toll-free number at 800-244-6227.
In the toy industry, cadmium is believed to have replaced lead as a cost-effective ingredient for trinkets and promotional items, in part because of federal laws restricting the use of lead.
McDonald's said about 7 million of the glasses had been sold and about 5 million were in stores or had not been shipped yet in the United States. The company's Canadian office said 1.4 million had been sold or shipped to restaurants in that country.