Asbestos-Containing Gemstones Sold at New-Age Stores

ceramic bowl full of gemstonesGemstones sold at new-age stores in Australia have been recalled due to the inclusion of asbestos.

A green-black gemstone, serpentine, that some believe can “detox the body and alleviate diabetes,” has been recalled due to it containing asbestos. The gemstones were sold at stores in Australia, but serpentine is also found naturally occurring in the United States.

Serpentine is prolifically found in California and is the official state mineral. In 1965 serpentine replaced gold as the state mineral since it was viewed as an economically important mineral because it is a known source of asbestos.

Serpentine is green, blue, and cream colored, very smooth, slippery, shiny, and fibrous and can be easily fractured.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission warned those who may have purchased the asbestos-containing serpentine to “immediately stop using this product and wrap it in thick sturdy plastic or a heavy-duty sturdy plastic bag where the seal cannot be broken.”