Heavy Metals and Baby Food: What You Need to Know

A recent study reveals heavy metals in shelf-stablilized baby food. Lets break it down together.

  • In 2018, a Consumer Report study revealed the dangerously high levels of heavy metals found in shelf-stabilized baby food. A recent 2019 report has confirmed that shelf-stabilized and particularly rice cereal brands have a long way to go in ensuring safety for our babies.
  • Healthy Babies Bright Futures (HBBF) tested 168 baby foods. 95% tested contained 1 or more heavy metals, and 1 in 4 contained all four toxins; cadmium, inorganic arsenic, mercury and lead. Bottom line: the levels of heavy metal in store-bought baby food continue to be beyond the minimum of what a child should safely consume.
  • 25 baby food containers and pouches in this test were sent to a separate lab for testing of perchlorate, a neurotoxic pollutant used as a disinfect agent in heavy machinery. 19 of the 25 containers contained this Cold War Era pollutant. Even trace amounts of perchlorate are found to have a negative impact on a child’s developing brain and IQ.

In late 2019, a report came out revealing the disturbing levels of heavy metals found in most grocery-store baby food. Heavy metals have a real impact on our babies developing brains and IQ. 

Needless to say, we’re fed up. We know how critical your baby’s first bites are. It’s why we created Little Spoon and it’s why we do things differently, every step of the way. 

Heavy metals commonly find their way into your baby’s food in two ways: ingredients coming from contaminated fields and heavy machinery coated and cleaned with heavy metals & neurotoxic pollutants.

What Can We Do As Parents?

  • Go Fresh: Cook yourself, or choose food that is made in smaller batches similar to homemade and is not subjected to heavy and extensive processing. This will reduce the unnecessary exposure to heavy metals beyond what is naturally occurring in produce.
  • Fight Metals With the Right Ingredients: Ingredients rich in Calcium, Vitamin C and Iron can help block the absorption of heavy metals. Look for foods that contain ingredients such as broccoli, bell peppers, strawberries, kale, chia, blueberries, spirulina, spinach and pineapple.
  • Ensure Variety: Some produce, such as carrots and sweet potatoes, have naturally occurring higher levels of heavy metals than other produce. While these foods are healthy and an important part of every child’s diet, ensuring a varied diet with other fruits and vegetables can decrease risk.
  • Skip the Rice Cereal: Rice is rich in inorganic arsenic and heavy metals and are not necessary for the starting solids journey. Opt instead for a clean, organic iron supplement such as Wiz Kid, which is made up of Iron, Vitamin E and Omega-3 DHA. 

How Is Little Spoon Different?

  • 100% USDA-Certified Organic & Non-GMO Project Verified Ingredients: We only partner with trusted farms who regally perform testing on their ingredients.
  • We Test Over and Over: We perform third-party lab tests on every single batch of Babyblends to ensure safety & the highest quality. As the only nationwide fresh baby food delivery brand, we have full traceability on where and when all of our food is sent (unlike grocery store brands).
  • No Heavy Machinery: All of our food is made by hand, in small-batches, fresh and never treated with extreme heat. Metals commonly make their way into store-bought food as a result of lengthy processing and commercial sterilization with heavy machinery that’s coated with brass, bronze or plastic. 
  • Our Recipes: We use endless recipe combinations to ensure produce rich in calcium, vitamin D, vitamin C and iron are in your baby’s varied diet. These vitamins and nutrients help block absorption of heavy metals that can be naturally found in produce. We avoid ingredients rich in inorganic heavy metals such as rice and soy, instead using organic chia, quinoa, buckwheat and hemp. 
  • Our Vitamins & Probiotics: We are the only brand that offers both fresh, organic baby food and other vitamins & supplements. For iron fortification, our Wiz Kid supplement is a safe alternative to iron-fortified cereals that are riddled with heavy metals. Sniffle Shield not only protects your mini during cold and flu season, but can help increase vitamin C stores to keep the lead out.


Freshly made, small-batch food like Little Spoon is always the safest way to ensure your baby is getting the most thoughtfully prepared, highest quality food. We do everything we can to help you take the best care of your little one and we love being a part of your journey. 

Additional questions? We’re here for you. Reach out to us at [email protected] or text us at 415.855.4155

Want to take a deeper dive on this topic? Read the full report here.


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