TOX ALERT or 516-663-2650
LI REGIONAL POISON & DRUG INFORMATION CENTER
Counterfeit Colgate Toothpaste Found
The Colgate–Palmolive Company today warned that counterfeit toothpaste falsely packaged as "Colgate" has been found in several dollar-type discount stores in four states: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. There are indications that this product does not contain fluoride and may contain Diethylene Glycol. The Company stated that it does not use, nor has ever used, Diethylene Glycol as an ingredient in Colgate toothpaste anywhere in the world.
The counterfeit toothpaste can be easily recognized because it is labeled as "Manufactured in South Africa." Colgate does not import toothpaste into the United States from South Africa. In addition, the counterfeit packages examined so far have several misspellings including: "isclinically" "SOUTH AFRLCA" "South African Dental Assoxiation".
Counterfeit toothpaste is not manufactured or distributed by Colgate and has no connection with the Company whatsoever. Colgate is working closely with the US FDA to help to identify those responsible for the counterfeit product.
Diethylene glycol is a highly toxic organic solvent used in the manufacture of lacquers, as a plasticizer, finishing agent for some fabrics, brake and hydraulic fluid, antifreeze and in some air conditioner systems. Recently it was implicated as the cause of renal failure and death in many patients in Panama who had ingested a cough syrup that had been contaminated with diethylene glycol instead of glycerin.
Consumers who suspect they may have purchased a counterfeit product, can call Colgate’s toll-free number at 1-800-468-6502. For information regarding a suspected poisoning of this product, please contact the Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222 or 516-663-2650.
James W. Reed, Deputy Commissioner
Nassau County Office of Consumer Affairs
200 County Seat Drive
Mineola, New York 11501-4807
516-571-3284 or Cell 516-361-9270