Contaminated Counterfeit Toothpaste Now Found in 6 States, Canada

Sunday, July 01, 2007

The 2 words “SOUTH AFRICA”  proceeding “Made in” are the 2 words that we should be wary of all imports that are consumable by mouth not only for us but for our pets and all farmed animals. 
My question is, are these products intentionally being tainted with the poisonous chemical DEG or is it being used as a cheap substitute for something else without intention to cause illnesses and  fatalaties.

WASHINGTON —  Counterfeit Colgate toothpaste has now turned up in Canada, where testing has found dangerous bacteria but not the poisonous chemical previously detected in four U.S. states, a health official said Saturday.

In addition, store owners and police say they have discovered that the bogus Colgate was sold in Michigan and Virginia.

The FDA warned earlier in June that fake Colgate distributed in Maryland, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania may contain a poisonous chemical called diethylene glycol, or DEG, that typically is used in antifreeze. That toothpaste was the subject of a June 13 recall by a New Jersey distributor.

It was not immediately clear if the counterfeit products in Pinconning, Mich., and Arlington, Va., had been tested for DEG.

In Canada, testing did not find the chemical but did show high levels of harmful bacteria, said Paul Duchesne, a spokesman for Health Canada.

A Food and Drug Administration spokeswoman said Saturday she was checking into reports of the wider distribution beyond the first four states.

The bacteria pose a significant health risk, especially to children and anyone with a weakened immune system, Health Canada said. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police is investigating.

In all cases, the toothpaste was labeled as made in South Africa. Both the FDA and New York-based Colgate-Palmolive Co. have said the products are fake, citing in part misspellings — “SOUTH AFRLCA” is one — on the packaging. Its true origin is unknown, according to the FDA

For the complete aricle and related see Fox News – foxnews.com

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More Imported Toothpaste Being Recalled in 4 States

Thursday, June 14, 2007 3:46 AM CDT
This Colgate toothpaste is labled “Made is South Africa.” It is getting to the point it isn’t safe to buy a product that is consumable or could possibly be ingested.


WASHINGTON
– The Colgate-Palmolive Company said Thursday that 5-ounce tubes of counterfeit toothpaste sold in discount stores in four states under a Colgate label are being recalled because they may contain a poisonous chemical.

A Food and Drug Administration official, Doug Arbesfeld, said Wednesday that testing had found the chemical in a product with the Colgate label, but said in the initial announcement that the FDA was unsure whether it really was Colgate or a counterfeit.

“We are aware that toothpaste is something that’s been counterfeited in the past,” he said. “We don’t want to alarm people unnecessarily.”

MS USA Trading, Inc. of North Bergen, N.J., the importer involved in the initial recall announcement, said the toothpaste may contain diethylene glycol, a chemical found in antifreeze.

The company said the toothpaste, imported from South Africa, was sold in discount stores in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland.

“Made in South Africa” is printed on the box and includes Regular, Gel, Triple and Herbal versions.

The trading company said the problem was discovered in routine testing by the Food and Drug Administration. It said no illnesses have been reported to date.

The same chemical has led to the recall of several brands of toothpaste imported from China in recent weeks.

Consumers who have purchased 5-ounce toothpaste under the Colgate label can return them to the place of purchase for a refund, MS USA Trading said.

Colgate-Palmolive issued a press release early Thursday saying the tubes are counterfeit.

The company said it does not use, nor has ever used, diethylene glycol as an ingredient in Colgate toothpaste anywhere in the world.

“Colgate does not import toothpaste into the United States from South Africa,” said the statement from Colgate-Palmolive. “In addition, the counterfeit packages examined so far have several misspellings including: `isclinically,’ `SOUTH AFRLCA’ and `South African Dental Assoxiation.

“Counterfeit toothpaste is not manufactured or distributed by Colgate and has no connection with the company whatsoever,” the company said, adding that Colgate is working closely with the FDA “to help to identify those responsible for the counterfeit product.”

But Colgate said consumers who suspect they may have purchased counterfeit product can call Colgate’s toll-free number at 1-800-468-6502.

On the Net:

Food and Drug Administration: http://www.fda.gov

A service of the Associated Press(AP)

FDA: Throw away toothpaste made in China

POSTED: 7:21 p.m. EDT, June 1, 2007

WASHINGTON (AP) — The government warned consumers on Friday to avoid using toothpaste made in China because it may contain a poisonous chemical used in antifreeze.

Out of caution, the Food and Drug Administration said, people should throw away toothpaste with labeling that says it was made in China. The FDA is concerned that these products may contain diethylene glycol.

The agency is not aware of any poisoning from toothpaste in the United States, but it did find the antifreeze ingredient in a shipment at the U.S. border and at two retail stores: a Dollar Plus store in Miami and a Todo A Peso store in Puerto Rico.

Officials said they are primarily concerned about toothpaste sold at bargain retail outlets. The ingredient in question, called DEG, is used as a lower-cost sweetener and thickening agent. The highest concentration of the chemical found in toothpaste so far was between 3 percent and 4 percent of the product’s overall weight.

“It does not belong in toothpaste even in small concentrations,” said the FDA’s Deborah M. Autor.

The FDA increased its scrutiny of toothpaste made in China because of reports of contamination in several countries, including Panama.

The agency is particularly concerned about chronic exposure to DEG in children and in people with kidney or liver disease.

Agency officials said they had no estimate of how many tubes of tainted toothpaste might have made it into the United States.

“Our concern today is potentially about all toothpaste that comes in from China,” Autor said. “Our estimate is that China makes up about $3.3 million of the $2 billion U.S. toothpaste market.”

The agency also issued an import alert Friday for all dental products containing DEG. The alert means toothpaste from China will be stopped at the border, she said.

Companies that make brands previously found with DEG will have to prove the toothpaste is free of the chemical before it’s allowed into the country. Meanwhile, all other brands of Chinese-made toothpaste will be stopped for testing, something the agency has been doing since May 23.

The import alert posted by the government says DEG has been improperly used in a variety of sedatives, syrups and cough medicines worldwide. Most recently, a cough syrup containing DEG resulted in more than 40 deaths in Panama last September.

The alert says the agency found DEG in three products manufactured by Goldcredit International Trading in China. The products are Cooldent Fluoride, Cooldent Spearmint and Cooldent ICE. Analysis of the products revealed they contained between 3 percent and 4 percent DEG.

The agency also found the chemical in one product manufactured by Suzhou City Jinmao Daily Chemical Co. in China. Analysis of that product, Shir Fresh Mint Fluoride Paste, found it contained about 1 percent DEG.

China’s food safety problems have in recent months become a matter of international concern, a situation reflected in trade talks between Chinese and U.S. officials in Washington last week.

Most notably, on March 15, FDA learned that certain pet foods were sickening and killing cats and dogs. FDA found contaminants in vegetable proteins imported into the United States from China and used as ingredients in pet food.