Crayola crayons tested negative for dangerous chemicals in a study by a consumer group, the United States Public Interest Research Group Education Fund. A green Playskool crayon tested positive for trace amounts of tremolite, a form of asbestos.
A public interest group said this week that it had found toxic substances in a number of school supplies, including asbestos in a Playskool crayon and another carcinogen, benzene, in a dry-erase marker.
The findings were detailed in a report published Tuesday by the group, the United States Public Interest Research Group Education Fund, which had an independent laboratory test 27 back-to-school products. Four tested positive for dangerous chemicals.
“It’s insane for us to be finding asbestos in kids’ products, whether it’s technically legal or not, and parents shouldn’t have to worry about this in 2018,” said Dev Gowda, an author of the report who also directs the group’s campaign to persuade manufacturers to drop toxic substances from personal care products.
“We wish that we didn’t have to do a study like this, but the reality is that corporations — from manufacturers, distributors and retailers — aren’t doing this for us,” he said.
The group tested crayons, markers, binders, water bottles, lunchboxes, notebooks, rulers and glue. The products were purchased nationwide at a variety of businesses, including box stores, dollar stores, pharmacies, arts and crafts stores, and online.
The group, which has been surveying toys for more than three decades, recommended that the companies that make or offer the products stop selling them and start notifying consumers about the chemicals they appear to contain.