Total recall for Chinese toys, toothpastes

Published: Saturday 15 September 2007

Lead on the shelves Of late, Chinese products have come under severe criticism worldwide. The us toy company Mattel Inc recently recalled 19 million Chinese-made toys, because the toys contained lead paint. The recall is the second in a month.

Mattel also recalled millions of toys made with small, powerful magnets that pose a threat if swallowed by children.

Following this the us Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in a statement, suggested that parents worried about their children having ingested lead paint on toys get them screened for lead exposure.

Lead is dangerous for children as it harms the developing brain, causes learning disabilities and behavioural problems. While a single large dose can cause a medical emergency, experts say lead poisoning builds up gradually over time and amid repeated exposure to tiny amounts of the toxin.

In another incident, the Nigerian authorities in the second week of August cracked down on all foreign-manufactured toothpastes, after they discovered the anti-freezing agent diethyl glycol in Chinese-made Colgate toothpaste. The authorities have directed retailers to destroy them and have suggested Nigerians citizens to use only locally-manufactured toothpaste. Diethyl glycol causes abdominal pains, nausea, vomiting, and can damage kidney and liver.

As if this wasn't enough, the Chinese pharmaceutical company Holley-Cotec has announced a recall of thousands of its anti-malarial drugs supplied to Kenya after it discovered a counterfeit syndicate. Twenty thousand doses of the drug will be taken off the market, a company release said.

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