EcoWaste Coalition has called on the provincial government of Laguna to stop the illicit trade of mercury-containing cosmetics in the province.
Environmental watchdog, EcoWaste Coalition, sounded the alarm over the “indiscriminate” selling of beauty products with a high concentration of mercury in at least eight areas in Laguna province.
In a press release Tuesday (May 24), EcoWaste called on the provincial government of Laguna to stop the illicit trade of mercury-laden cosmetics in the province.
According to the group, they e-mailed a letter to Governor Ramil Hernandez, alerting him about the unlawful sale in Laguna of banned skin whitening products containing highly toxic mercury, a chemical prohibited in cosmetic products such as skin lightening creams, lotions and soaps.
“This is a brazen violation of a globally agreed phase-out by 2020 of cosmetics such as skin whitening products with mercury content above one part per million (ppm) under the Minamata Convention on Mercury,” Aileen Lucero, National Coordinator of EcoWaste Coalition, said in the statement.
“We urge Governor Hernandez to act promptly to address this threat to public health and the environment,” she added.
In separate test buys conducted by EcoWaste last May 20 and 21, the group discovered at least 22 mercury-laced skin whitening creams sold by cosmetic dealers in the municipalities of Los Baños and Sta. Cruz and the cities of Biñan, Cabuyao, Calamba, San Pablo, San Pedro and Sta. Rosa.
The products were among the over 150 skin whitening cosmetics banned by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for lacking market authorization and/or for containing mercury above the maximum limit of 1 ppm as per the ASEAN Cosmetic Directive and the Minamata Convention, the group said.
The group detected mercury above the 1 ppm limit in all the 22 samples, it reported.
Products of one particular brand, Goree, were found to contain extremely high levels of mercury from 26,340 to 29,370 ppm.
In their letter to the provincial government, the EcoWaste Coalition also emphasized that mercury in cosmetic products will eventually find its way in the environment, including waste water and water bodies, and thereby contaminating the water system and the food supply with this highly toxic substance.
Tags: #toxics, #mercury, #beautycare, #EcoWasteCoalition