Tuesday, 07 Jul 2020

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Mercury in skin whitening creams

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Health Desk- 14 Dec, 2019: Imported skin whitening creams contain dangerous levels of mercury content, with some brands having more than one lakh times higher mercury than the national permissible limit, reveals in a report.

The Environment and Social Development Organization (ESDO) on behalf of the Zero Mercury Working Group (ZMWG), recently revealed  a study report titled ‘Dangerous, mercury-leaden and often illegal Skin Lightening Products: Readily Available for Online Purchase’ in a press conference at ESDO office at Lalmatia in the capital.

ESDO collected 16 samples of imported creams from online shopping sites and local markets before sending those to Biodiversity Research Institute’s laboratory of USA and Arnika Laboratory of Czech Republic in September for chemical test reports.

The reports from the globally recognized labs were made available last month.

The ZMWG is an international coalition of more than 110 public interest environmental and health non-governmental organizations from over 55 countries from around the world formed in 2005 by the European Environmental Bureau and the Mercury Policy Project.

BSTI Assistant Director SM Abu Sayed said, “We can take action if anyone imports any mercury-added product, which is beyond our permissible level. But if people bring the products by illegal means, then how will we act? There is no monitoring on online sales of products. We don’t know who is selling what”.