Regulations Governing Lead in Candy and Other Foods Consumed by Children
WHEREAS, the Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) is the public health entity for Clark County, Nevada, pursuant to Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) Chapter 439, and has jurisdiction over all public health matters in the health district; and
WHEREAS, the Southern Nevada District Board of Health (Board) is the governing body of the SNHD, and is authorized to adopt regulations to prevent and control public health hazards and nuisances and to protect and promote the public health and safety in the geographical area subject to the jurisdiction of the health district; and
WHEREAS, lead is a naturally occurring heavy metal element whose toxicity in humans has been well documented. Lead is a toxic substance that attacks and adversely affects many different organs and body systems, including neurological, cardiovascular, renal, gastrointestinal, reproductive (greater than ninety  percent passes from mother to fetus), and skeletal systems. Children are more susceptible to the effects of lead toxicity than adults and no safe blood lead level in children has been determined. Lead is widely present in the environment due to its natural occurrence and human activities that have introduced it into the general environment such as the use of leaded gasoline. Because lead may be present in environments where food crops are grown and animals used for food are raised, various foods may contain unavoidable but small amounts of lead. However, foods may become contaminated with lead if they are grown, stored, or processed under conditions that could introduce larger amounts of lead into the food, such as when a root crop is grown in soil that has been contaminated from past use of leaded pesticides on that acreage. Under such conditions, the resulting contamination of the food may pose a health risk to consumers. There have been a number of cases of children with elevated blood lead (EBL) levels that have been investigated by the SNHD. Some of these investigations revealed the consumption of candy with excessive amounts of lead was an identified source of lead exposure.
WHEREAS, the Board finds that lead-contaminated products and lead-related hazards can affect the health and well being of the children residing in Southern Nevada, and finds that it is necessary to adopt Regulations Governing Lead in Candy and Other Foods Consumed by Children to prevent and control lead-related health hazards potentially originating from candy and other food products likely to be consumed by children, where lead content has been previously identified, and
WHEREAS, the Health Authority recognizes the importance of proper identification and removal of lead-contaminated products from the consumer market, with intent to reduce the likelihood of illness resulting from exposure to lead, and
WHEREAS, Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) Chapter 585, NRS Chapter 446, NRS 439.366, and SNHD Regulations Governing the Sanitation of Food Establishments 2010 give the health district authority to enforce laws and Regulations associated with contaminated or adulterated food and public nuisances, and
WHEREAS, the Board believes that the following Regulations are designed to protect and promote public health and safety, it does therefore publish, promulgate and order compliance within Clark County, Nevada with the substantive and procedural requirements hereinafter set forth.
Intent and Scope
The purpose of these Regulations is to protect and promote the public health and safety of Clark County residents and visitors through preventive measures and timely corrections of significant public health and environmental issues related to lead exposure in children.
These Regulations establish definitions; set standards for the identification, notification, and recall of candy and other food related products contaminated with lead that are likely to be consumed by children; provide for enforcement actions; and include provisions for recovery of the direct and administrative costs associated with the identification, notification, and recall of lead-contaminated food stuffs.