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Yet Another Freaky Friday From the FDA

Once again, the FDA waits until Friday to tells us the latest: FDA Advises Consumers to Avoid Toothpaste From China Containing Harmful Chemical

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today warned consumers to avoid using tubes of toothpaste labeled as made in China, and issued an import alert to prevent toothpaste containing the poisonous chemical diethylene glycol (DEG) from entering the United States.

DEG is used in antifreeze and as a solvent.

Consumers should examine toothpaste products for labeling that says the product is made in China. Out of an abundance of caution, FDA suggests that consumers throw away toothpaste with that labeling. FDA is concerned that these products may contain “diethylene glycol,” also known as “diglycol” or “diglycol stearate.”

FDA is not aware of any U.S. reports of poisonings from toothpaste containing DEG. However, the agency is concerned about potential risks from chronic exposure to DEG and exposure to DEG in certain populations, such as children and individuals with kidney or liver disease. DEG in toothpaste has a low but meaningful risk of toxicity and injury to these populations. Toothpaste is not intended to be swallowed, but FDA is concerned about unintentional swallowing or ingestion of toothpaste containing DEG.

FDA has identified the following brands of toothpaste from China that contain DEG and are included in the import alert: Cooldent Fluoride; Cooldent Spearmint; Cooldent ICE; Dr. Cool, Everfresh Toothpaste; Superdent Toothpaste; Clean Rite Toothpaste; Oralmax Extreme; Oral Bright Fresh Spearmint Flavor; Bright Max Peppermint Flavor; ShiR Fresh Mint Fluoride Paste; DentaPro; DentaKleen; and DentaKleen Junior. Manufacturers of these products are: Goldcredit International Enterprises Limited; Goldcredit International Trading Company Limited; and Suzhou City Jinmao Daily Chemicals Company Limited. The products typically are sold at low-cost, bargain retail outlets.

Not to worry, this only affects poor people who have to buy toothpaste at the dollar stores, people like the families of the enlisted military, no one important. This has been known about for months as it has taken place in Central America, but nothing was done until people started getting nervous after the Chinese poisoned pet food.

It’s fairly straight forward – everything this administration does is political and poor people don’t have lobbyists, but pets do.

5 comments

1 oldwhitelady { 06.02.07 at 6:59 pm }

I always knew brushing one’s teeth could be harmful! Now, what is there anything about floss? It would be a good reason when the dentist asked if I’ve been flossing regularly.

2 hipparchia { 06.02.07 at 7:28 pm }

It’s a good thing that we Americans have gotten nutty about our pets and spend billions of dollars on them every year, and love them like they’re family members. One does wonder how much longer this substitution of cheap, toxic ingredients for expensive, true ingredients would have gone on had pet lovers and their lobbyists not raised a stink.

Telling people which words [chemical names] to look out for, in addition to listing just brand names, is good, because we may not yet have identified all the brands that contain this chemical. I’ve got one problem with that, though. The first reports that I read said that ethylene glycol was being surreptitiously substituted for glycerin, which suggests that maybe we ought to be throwing away all our toothpaste [and any other product] that says “glycerin” on the label.

3 Bryan { 06.02.07 at 8:38 pm }

Sorry, OWL, but to the best of my knowledge flossing is still safe.

The difference in cost is minimal, Hipparchia, and if bio-diesel gets rolling there will be a glut of glycerin, as it is a by product of the process, as well as a by product of making soap. The real problem seems to be that there are no standards on what the Chinese are doing, and the most recent head of the Chinese version of the FDA was just sentenced to death for corruption.

The root cause is that old Communist attitude of fulfill the goals without regard for the costs. There were always more people, but the plan must be met.

4 hipparchia { 06.03.07 at 10:07 pm }

Death by toothpaste.

Being a bit of a misanthrope myself, and very much a treehugger, and knowing what little I do about China’s population problems, I can see where “there are always more people, but the plan must be met” might work. I’ve got a real problem with going so far as to actually put that thought into practice, whether by actively killing people, or just passively letting them die when they don’t have to.

5 Bryan { 06.04.07 at 10:03 am }

The Chinese government looks on the individual in a totally different way than the West. They don’t value the individual, except in his/her ability to improve the nation. They have an attitude that we associate with ants or bees. Individual Chinese are the same as anyone else, but nationally they don’t put any value on one person.