Date
22 August 2017
Three of the toothpaste samples contain traces of triclosan, an antibacterial agent believed to be linked to cancer, but all are within the safety standard. Photo: Bloomberg
Three of the toothpaste samples contain traces of triclosan, an antibacterial agent believed to be linked to cancer, but all are within the safety standard. Photo: Bloomberg

Three toothpaste brands found to have chemical linked to cancer

Hong Kong’s consumer watchdog found that three toothpaste brands contain triclosan, a chemical linked to cancer, although the amount is below the maximum limit, RTHK reported on Thursday.

The Consumer Council has tested 35 different brands of toothpaste for adults and children. Three of the samples contain traces of triclosan, an antibacterial agent believed to be linked to cancer, but all are within the safety standard.

The three toothpaste brands are Colgate Total Professional Whitening, Totalcare with Fluoride Whitening and Beverly Hills Formula Total Protection Whitening.

The makers of two of the products failed to list triclosan on the labels. The customs department has asked suppliers to suspend sales of the products.

Two of the products were also found to contain tiny amounts of arsenic and mercury. Among the nine samples of toothpaste for children, two were found to contain small amounts of lead. The council said the chemicals are below the maximum limit.

The tests were conducted with reference to the Hygienic Standard for Cosmetics, China and GB8372-2008 (Toothpaste), which are largely in line with prevailing international standards, the council said.

Toothpaste is currently regulated under the city’s Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance, which “requires manufacturers, importers and suppliers to ensure that all consumer goods they supply comply with the general safety requirement”.

Related story:

Colgate toothpaste chemical linked to cancer

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JZ/JP/CG

Freelance journalist

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