Stanley Cup Fear Isn’t Something to Worry About, Experts Say

Stanley Cup Fear Isn’t Something to Worry About, Experts Say

You may have heard of the Stanley Cup, the hip and trendy water bottle that has people camping out in front of stores or fighting to get their hands on one.

They became a fashion accessory, especially as Stanley used influencer culture to target women and skyrocket sales of his tumblers. The reach of the bottles was amplified by social media users.

But social media gives and social media takes away. In recent weeks, several publications widely shared on Tic Tac, Instagram, Reddit and X amplified concerns that Stanley Cups might contain lead, says X user “The leader”. YouTubers also jumped into the fray. A TikTok video on the subject was viewed almost seven million times.

Some Stanley owners, hoping to verify the allegations, began use home lead test kits, which experts say are unreliable. A sending the Stanley Cup phenomenon on “Saturday Night Live” this weekend — a sketch called “Big Dumb Cups” — even mentioned the lead role in passing.

The main discussion appeared on Facebook comment sectionsas in a group of more than 61,000 members called “Stanley Cup Hunters + Drops” – for “passionate Stanley Cup fanatics.”

One person wrote, “If we want to dress our lead bonnets with a flowered straw cover and a sequined boot and show them off, let’s do it!! We know they have lead, you told us. We do not care ! »

So you might be wondering: should I throw my Stanley Cup down the chimney? (No. Actually, don’t throw anything down your chimney.) We’ve got some answers for those of you who really want to keep up with the times and drink fashionable water.

Yes, according to company website. It says its “vacuum insulation technology,” which keeps the contents of the cup at an ideal temperature, uses “an industry-standard pellet to seal the vacuum insulation at the base of our products.” The sealant material is said to “contain lead.”

Once the bottle is sealed, Stanley said, the area is covered with a layer of stainless steel, which the company says makes the lead “inaccessible to consumers.”

No. Almost certainly not.

Jack Caravanos, a public health professor at New York University who studies lead, tested three Stanley Cup models of different sizes on Monday using an X-ray fluorescence detector, which determines the elements in a material .

“There are many places where lead can be found on a cup like that,” Dr. Caravanos said. “It can be inside, outside, on labels, decals. And I didn’t find lead – a kind of superficial lead on the surface – in any part of the cup.

“I’m an expert in global exposure,” he added. “I have worked a lot on different products and countries. And the threat to human health is really negligible, because you’re not really going to put your mouth near that surface, and it’s not going to dissolve easily into anything that might get inside you..”

But what about the area beneath the stainless steel?

To do this, Dr. Caravanos said he would need to deconstruct the cup itself, which is by no means an easy task.

“I tried several times to open the bottom cap with various tools and failed,” he said. “Maybe the lead is used to seal the cork. In any case, this should further assure the public that it is very unlikely that lead will be released from the cup and made available for ingestion.

Dr. Caravanos said the home lead tests available on the market today are not considered reliable – and none available today are approved by the Environmental Protection Agency. ‘environment. However, on Tuesday morning, Dr. Caravanos attempted a home test on a cup and still did not get a positive test.

The fact that the cups used some kind of lead in the first place speaks to “poor thinking” on the company’s part, Dr. Caravanos said.

I’m really disheartened and sort of angry that a company like this would use a known toxic ingredient that is banned in many applications for a cup,” he said. “I mean, surely there could have been an alternative.”

A Stanley representative referred to the explanation on the company’s website describing the use of lead in the cups. But in a statement to NBC Newssaid a representative: “Our engineering and supply chain teams are making progress on innovative and alternative materials for use in the sealing process. »

Lead, which is regulated by the federal governmentis still prevalent in the United States, including in paint, cooking utensils, and water flowing through lead pipes.

“There are many health effects associated with lead exposure, such as reproductive toxicity and cardiovascular disease,” said Maria Jose Talayero, a public health researcher at George Washington University. “And the one I study the most is damage to the nervous system, which leads to various neurological effects.”

She added: “But it’s a fact that other cups and other manufacturers don’t use lead, so why have it there in the first place? »

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Eric D. Eilerman

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