Thursday, May 31, 2007

According to a report in USA Today today the Chinese government has "mounted a spirited defense of the country's food and drug safety system". The government spokesman, Li Yuanping, shifted the blame to US officials for "lax procedures" that allow them to accept imports that are not officially approved by the Chinese government. Partly true I guess, but a typical blame shifting tactic. The spokesman also "claimed" that 99% of Chinese food exports to the USA "met quality standards", a figure that was slightly higher than the rate of US exports to China. This is actually quite bizarre, as the first statement admits that the Chinese government has no handle on what is actually exported (enough to give an old style Stalinist diarrhea). The spokesman is also quite aware of how little of the Chinese exports are actually "inspected" on arrival in the USA. Sounds to Molly like the invention of utterly fantastic "statistics" with no factual basis. Even more incredibly Li tried to shift blame for the recent deaths in Panama from cough syrup tainted with antifreeze to the Panamanians who supposedly "falsified the scope of use and shelf life of the product". Cough, cough,cough, cough. NOW this ignorant ex-chemist Molly knows that antifreeze goes "outdated" and only becomes poisonous then. As to the "scope" of the product maybe this refers to some sort of thing like "not meant as a sole source of fluids". Who the hell knows. Great as a comedy routine I guess, though the American FDA has been unintentionally funny at times during the pet food recall crisis.
Anyways, as a public service, here is a list of some brands of toothpaste manufactured in China that "responsible authorities" (cough) might want to check for diethylene glycol contamination. These are from the Global Source listing, and they don't pretend to be a complete list. According to one Chinese report as far back as 2005 China was the world's leading producer of toothpaste, exporting to over 80 countries. In 2005 China produced 5.2 billion tubes of toothpaste. Not that the Chinese are entirely at fault because foreign firms have set up production in the Peoples' Republic since the 1990s.
So, here's the preliminary list. In the following the abbreviation "GLEG" refers to the Guangzhou Liby Enterprise Group:
Brand Supplier
Herbal Essense Toothpaste GLEG
2-Fluoride and calcium Toothpaste GLEG
Blue Sky Toothpaste GLEG
Bamboo Toothpaste GLEG
Crystal Toothpaste GLEG
Superclear Crystal White Toothpaste GLEG
Crystal Herbal Toothpaste GLEG
Pear-Light Toothpaste GLEG
Liby 2-Fluoride and Calcium Toothpaste GLEG
Pearl Toothpaste GLEG
As the reader can see this represents only the brands distributed by one supplier. Some of these may only be available in China, but the reader should take note of the name "Herbal Essence" in the above list. More on this later as Molly searches it down and expands it.

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