China has vowed to increase its controls on dental care products following alarm over the country’s exported toothpaste being contaminated with a potentially lethal chemical.
Countries in North and South America, as well as Asia, have recently halted imports of Chinese-made toothpaste due to its content of diethylene glycol, a low-cost and sometimes deadly substitute for glycerin. However, there have been no reports of health problems stemming from the product, and China, which has no guidelines banning the chemical in toothpaste, says it is harmless in small amounts.
State media service China News reported though that a set of ‘strict certification and evaluation procedures’ are being drawn up for oral care products by China’s Health Ministry and the China Certification and Accreditation Administration.
A spokeswoman for the administration, which oversees the certification of Chinese products, confirmed regulations were being drawn up.