China Sees Contamination and Product Recall Issues with Exports

China is undoubtedly one of the largest cosmetic and personal care manufacturers in the world. Some of the industry's largest companies have branches there, and many beauty goods are shipped from China all over the world. It might, therefore, cause concern that China has been experiencing product recall issues, and the blame seems to be hovering over both the United States and China.

On Aug. 15, 2007, CNN Money reported that vinyl baby bibs sold at Toys "R" Us and manufactured in China appeared to be contaminated with lead. Tests conducted on the bibs showed a level of lead that was three times the level allowed in paint in bibs.

Separately, on Aug. 14, 2007, Mattel Inc. recalled nearly 18.2 million toys made in China  due to small, powerful magnets and lead paint. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) had heard reports that magnets were coming loose. In addition, it was found that certain Fisher-Price toys contained excessive amounts of lead.

But the toy industry is not the only industry being hit with product recalls from China-made goods. In June, The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised consumers to avoid toothpaste made in China that contained diethylene glycol (DEG), a chemical used in antifreeze and as a solvent. In its alert, the FDA listed a number of toothpaste brands that were found to contain the chemical.

In March 2007, many pet care brands had to recall contaminated pet food from shelves for its melamine content. The pet food that was making pets sick was manufactured with ingredients made in China.

No one knows for sure who is to blame, if anyone is to blame, for the recent contaminations and product recalls of Chinese exported goods. The issue has, however, caused concern, and will probably get worse before it gets better, as many regulatory agencies are now alerted to the issue.

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