Safety of Reusable Bags Called Into Question

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Cashier Bianca Kurian (L) hands out free reusable grocery bags at a Whole Foods Market natural and organic foods stores.

    The resuable grocery bags so popular with Bay Area shoppers may be saving the environment at a hefty cost.

    New York Sen. Charles Schmuer is calling for a federal investigation into reports that some reusable grocery bags contain harmful amounts of lead. 

    San Francisco has been ground zero for the national push to permanently bag plastic bags and switch to more sustainable carriers.

    The bags have gained popularity over the years with stores like Whole Foods and Trader Joes taking the lead on pushing them to their customers to make the switch to permanent. Now even stores such as WalMart sell reusable bags to their customers. The New York Times is reporting that most of the bags used by popular stores are not in question.

    Most of the bags in question were made in China. Schmuer wants a federal probe opened into the matter.