I just happened to see this recall while browsing around and decided to look more into it. Mindware is a company I rather like, they have some great things in their catalog that I would love to order. This kit is being recalled because it’s supposed to contain a packet of Plaster of Paris, however, that packet actually contains calcium hydroxide which is a big skin and eye irritant. A quick Wikipedia search tells me that calcium hydroxide is also a cancer suspect agent. Plaster of Paris is based upon calcium sulfate, not calcium hydroxide. While Plaster of Paris isn’t entirely safe, it is safer than the calcium hydroxide. Care should be taken either way. I’d much rather my kids be exposed to the safer of the two obviously. I’d like to think a company making a product for KIDS would ensure that it is the safest possible. Yeah, yeah, I know, no one is to be trusted to be entirely safe. I would love to know how this little mix up of chemicals occurred though.
So, I went to the website to find more information. The first thing I see is this lovely little banner on the left. I then looked all over the site to try and find some recall information. None to be found. I did find this though:
MindWare has been in the business of developing and sourcing toys, books and games to stimulate learning since 1991. We have always selected products that are of high quality and safe for our customers. All products offered in the 2007 Fall and Holiday catalogs have been tested at an independent laboratory and have passed all tests required by law. If you have any questions regarding MindWare’s practices or standards on toy safety or testing, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Well, alrighty then. This item was sold in the holiday catalog. And guess what?! It was made in CHINA. Thumbs down to Mindware.