Pediatricians Pushing For Choking Labels on Kids’ Food

February 23rd, 2010 - 2:04 am ICT by Angela Kaye Mason  

Chicago, IL Feb 22 (THAINDIAN NEWS) More than a hundred kids die each year of choking in the United States and thousands more are treated in hospital emergency rooms. Foods, candy, and gum are a few of the items that children choke on, as a matter of fact, out of the 141 choking deaths of children in 2006, 61 of them were food related. Items such as coins and balloons make up the rest. Dr. Gary Smith, the director at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, feels that this is under reported and that the numbers are actually higher.

Because of this, the American Academy of Pediatrics feels that a lot of this is due to the fact that some foods are designed in such as way as to make them a choking hazard, and they are suggesting that warning label be placed on these foods. They have even made the suggestion that some foods, such as hot dogs, be completely re-designed.

Doctors are saying that foods such as hot dogs, raw carrots, grapes, apples, should be cut into bites the size of peas, and items such as popcorn, peanuts, and marshmallows should never be given to small children. They are saying that since there are mandates on choking warnings for toys, and such, that if the food producers won’t voluntarily put the labels on their products, they should be forced to as well.

This comes after Joan Stavros Adler, whose 4 year old son, Eric Stavros Adler died after choking on a hot dog, began to push for more warning labels. She is an attorney in Warren NJ. Several efforts to pass these mandates have failed in Congress.

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