The Ministry of Health, through the Directorate of Regulation of Products of Health Interest, alerts the general population about the detection in Panama and then in Costa Rica of counterfeit versions of COLGATE TRIPLE ACCIÓN and DOUBLE FRESH COLGATE tubes of toothpaste.
According to the Ministry of Health on September 18th, 2019, in response to communications issued by the National Customs Authority (@aduanaspanama on Twitter on September 13th), and by the Ministry of Health of Panama (Communiqué N° 022 / DNFD- September 18th, 2019) on the detection in that country of counterfeit units of the 75 mL COLGATE TRIPLE ACTION toothpaste in the Chiriquí and Herrera provinces. Under the precautionary principle, the Costa Rican population is asked not to use that product when they have the following features:
Lot L9099CT1034 with expiration date 04/22 in the front tube
Lot L9099GT1034 with expiration date 04/22 in the box
After the publication of the alert, reports have been received from citizens about the presence of the fake lot in the national market mostly in “Chinese” supermarkets. The first seizures were made and the Pharmaceutical Analysis and Advisory Laboratory confirmed that the fake lot L9099GT1034 contains an ingredient that is not declared on the product labeling and that can be harmful to health: diethylene glycol (DEG).
DEG is a compound that is used as an anti-freezer and sometimes as a glycerin replacement thickener. It is rapidly absorbed by the digestive and respiratory tract and by prolonged skin contact. Central American health regulations prohibit the use of SDR in cosmetic products.
In addition, another false lot was identified in Costa Rica as confirmed by the COLGATE-PALMOLIVE company for the 50 mL and 75 mL DOUBLE FRESH COLGATE product with the following characteristics:
Lot L9099GT1025 with expiration date 04/22 in the box.
The COLGATE-PALMOLIVE company indicated that all original toothpastes COLGATE TRIPLE ACCIÓN and COLGATE DOUBLE FRESCURA are valid for 2 years after their manufacture. This allows the recognition of fake products because they indicate expiration in the year 2022.
Other characteristics associated with fake lots, compared to the original ones, are: little perceptible menthol flavor, strange taste and smell, very viscous consistency, more rigid material tube, tube declares lot and expires to the front (original declares it on the back), harder to open box, ends sealed with “silicone” and reddish tone of the box “less on” or “less alive”.
The population is recommended not to sell, buy or use the products with the characteristics indicated above. Deliver counterfeit tubes of toothpaste to the Ministry of Health.
Report to the Ministry of Health any suspicion of a counterfeit product by sending an email to [email protected] or to the nearest Health Rector Area.