BEIJING (AP) - U.S. regulators on Thursday ordered a recall of three more Chinese-made products for children on safety grounds, adding to a flurry of warnings about goods from China.
The latest recalls, announced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, cover jewelry that the agency said could cause lead poisoning and a magnetic building set and plastic castles with small parts that it said could choke children.
The orders add to an avalanche of U.S. government actions in recent weeks to recall or restrict imports of Chinese tires, toothpaste, seafood, toys and other goods.
China has responded by stepping up enforcement of health and safety rules in the export industries that drive its economic growth. Beijing also has heatedly defended its record as a supplier of reliable goods and complained about possible protectionism linked to the safety warnings.
The latest recalls involve:
- 20,000 Essentials for Kids Jewelry sold by Future Industries, of Cliffwood Beach, N.J. The product safety agency said the metal jewelry sets contain high levels of lead that can be toxic if ingested by young children.
- 800 Mag Stix Magnetic Building Sets sold by Kipp Brothers, of Carmel, Ind. Small magnets inside the plastic sticks can fall out and could be dangerous if swallowed, the safety agency said. It said it an 8-year-old girl who swallowed magnets required surgery to remove them and repair intestinal perforations.
- 68,000 Shape Sorting Toy Castles sold by Infantino LLC, of San Diego. A plastic rod in the castles can come loose, posing a choking hazard to young children, the safety agency said.
Thousands of Chinese companies manufacture toys, furniture, clothing and other goods under contract from foreign companies.
In a gesture apparently aimed at reassuring both foreign and Chinese consumers, the government announced in June that it was closing 180 food processing facilities that were caught using formaldehyde, illegal dyes, and industrial wax in candy, pickles, crackers and seafood.
But officials also have accused foreign media of playing up the safety incidents, and a state newspaper warned Thursday against trying to use them to damage China's image and disrupt trade.
''Using the safety issues against all Chinese exports is neither reassuring nor productive,'' said the China Daily, an English-language newspaper aimed at foreign readers. ''It should not be an excuse for foreign protectionists to sell their trade-distorting arguments.''
State media said Wednesday that China is writing new regulations on dental care products after toxic diethylene glycol, commonly used in antifreeze, was found in Chinese toothpaste exported to markets in the Americas and Asia.