TAIPEI, Taiwan - A Magic Amah-brand detergent product was found in testing to contain pesticides that could disturb animal reproductive systems, the Homemakers United Foundation (HUF) and News&Market announced Tuesday.
News&Market spent six months randomly inspecting 35 brand-name detergents that claimed antiseptic and anti-mildew properties, and a detergent made by Magic Amah was discovered to contain the substance permethrin, a pesticide used for crops and wide-area applications such as nurseries and sod farms.
Wang Wen-hao, co-founder of News&Market, said that the levels of permethrin contained in the three samples of Magic Amah detergents were 76.3 ppm, 37.8 ppm, and 44.6 ppm, which all exceeded the regulated threshold of 0.05 ppm for the amount of pesticide residue allowed in vegetables and fruits.
Wang said that based on the product's permethrin content, it should be regulated by the Environmental Agents Control Act, but there is no information in the Environmental Protection Administration database suggesting that permethrin can be added into detergent.
Huang Chia-lin of the HUF said that the government should address the problems of mislabeling or unclear labeling of detergents available on the market as well as the potential health risks of using detergents that contain permethrin.
National Taiwan University Professor of Public Health Wu Kuen-yuh said that permethrin contains neurotoxins, which can cause damage to eyes and skin if absorbed directly through those organs.
Wu also said that wastewater containing permethrin can cause harm to the environment.