Next time you buy gold keep in mind that K.D.M. used to make gold can result in Cancer and Skin disease. KDM is actually an element name which is called cadmium. cadmium used for soldering in the ornaments where as the traditional goldsmith used to add copper. The labourers who are engaged in making jewellery face the risk of contacting cancer or skin disease. Cadmium is banned worldwide for manufacturing jewellery, yet it is used especially in the developing countries like India, Pakistan etc. K.D.M. is used to join the ends of gold. Cadmium, once applied as a joint, evaporates as steam which could prove fatal if inhaled by labourers. Previously jewellers used silver as a joint but since cadmium is easy to use and joins gold faster it is widely used by jewellery manufacturing companies. The fumes of cadmium are carcinogenic and could result in cancer.
The Government have introduced hallmark system for gold jewellery to check the use of cadmium. When applying for licence the manufacturer has to give undertaking to the effect that he would not use cadmium in any way. The implementation of law remains poor. Many jewellers are openly flouting the law and put the lives of labourers in danger. Even for the end user cadmium is dangerous. Wearing such ornaments for a long time can cause ‘Contact Dermatitis’ or skin allergies because of close contact of gold and skin. However no research has been carried out in this regard but doctor’s at Bombay Hospital feel such research should be carried out as soon as possible. People should be alert when buying the gold jewellery as they could avert the long term dangers to their health. Since most of the gold jewellery is made by developing countries where plenty of cheap labor is available, people should insist on cadmium test while buying the gold jewellery.