Ban on carcinogenic cosmetics pushed

Published May 7, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin


By Ellalyn de Vera Ruiz

An environmental group has urged the Philippine government to enforce stricter regulations on cosmetic products and their sellers to ensure consumers’ safety, particularly against cancer-causing ingredients.


Citing the European Union’s amendments to the cosmetic products regulation that entered into force last May 1, Ban Toxics said the amendment sought to ban several carcinogenic, mutagenic, or reproductive toxicants.

The Zero Mercury Working Group (ZMWG), a global coalition of non-government organizations, released a study in 2019 on the online sale of dangerous cosmetic products with high levels of mercury despite being banned by the government. Ban Toxics is part of the ZMWG.

In the Philippines, the group said that mercury-laced skin lighteners are still being sold in online shopping sites and in some stores in Divisoria despite the efforts of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to address the sale of toxic-laden cosmetic items.

“Filipino consumers are at risk of being exposed to carcinogenic cosmetic items due to its availability in online shopping websites and in select stores in Divisoria,” Ban Toxics executive director Reynaldo San Juan Jr. said. “The Philippine government and the shopping sites must be consistent in enforcing its regulations to address the need to protect their consumers from products that will cause them harm.”

“Unless steps are taken, Filipino consumers are at the mercy of unconscionable sellers of toxic goods. This is a matter of public health, and the government needs to fulfill its obligation to promote and protect the health of Filipinos,” he added.