Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Oh boy....China's toothpaste is toxic....

Are they trying to take over the world by poisoning everybody?

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China says is investigating reports that toothpaste contaminated with a potentially lethal chemical had been exported to Central America.

Thousands of tubes of Chinese-made toothpaste have been confiscated in Panama and the Dominican Republic.

The toothpaste contains diethylene glycol, a toxic chemical used in engine coolants, authorities there say.

A series of scares over the safety of Chinese products have recently aroused global concern.

The Dominican Republic has banned the sale of two different brands of toothpaste, both of which were made in China and imported through Panama.

Update: J. Goodrich of The Prospect writes an article on food imports and unregulated markets. Her last two paragraphs:

Whether the Bush administration is up to these challenges remains to be seen. A recent Washington Post article reports that the administration has opposed new safety rules for foreign foods, and that it views China more as a market for American products than as the source of potentially contaminated products later found in the United States. Add to that conservatives' general anti-regulation beliefs and their faith in unregulated markets, and one begins to have some doubts about reform. But the resumption of high-level trade talks with China this week gives the administration a good opportunity to dispel them by imposing stricter regulations on imports from China.

The administration should also promptly address the problem of the overburdened FDA, the firewall that is supposed to keep all of us safe. And how safe are we right now? Are we any better off than in the era before the passage of the 1938 food safety legislation? To return to the glycerin story, in early May of this year the FDA sent out an advisory which recommends -- but does not require -- that pharmaceutical manufacturers in this country test solvents marked as glycerin for the possible presence of diethylene glycol. Our next major food-safety scandal may be just around the corner.

And so... here comes diethylene glycol. What other surprises await us in foodstuffs from China?


echidne said...

Weird. See what I just wrote about diethylene glycol, especially the very last paragraph. The Bush administration does not require that the U.S. companies test for it!

ellroon said...

Oh holy cow. What the hell have they been making us consume all these years?

I'm linking and quoting your article. Thanks