EcoWaste Coalition Sounds the Alarm On Toxic Cockroach Killer Costing P10 per Sachet

EcoWaste Coalition Sounds the Alarm On Toxic Cockroach Killer Costing P10 per Sachet

Quezon City, (April 13, 2024) – A toxics watchdog group has raised the alarm against a cheap unregistered cockroach killer containing a possibly lethal and carcinogenic ingredient.

Taking its cue from a recent alert by the European Union (EU), the EcoWaste Coalition warned the public from purchasing and using a China-made household pesticide after it was banned by the French government for containing fipronil.

According to Alert Number A12/00891/24 published last Friday at Safety Gate, the EU’s rapid alert system for dangerous non-food products, Green Leaf Powder Cockroach Killing Bait was ordered withdrawn from the market effective December 12, 2023, for non-compliance with the Biocidal Products Regulation.

“The product contains fipronil, a substance that is ‘toxic if swallowed,’ ‘toxic in contact with skin,’ ‘fatal if inhaled’ and ‘causes damage to organs,’” the notification said.  “Overexposure is serious and potentially fatal.”

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified fipronil as a “possible human carcinogen.”

A quick investigation by the EcoWaste Coalition showed that a cockroach killer bearing the same brand name and sachet packaging as the product banned in France is being sold locally in online shopping platforms and in sidewalk stores.  However, the name of the Chinese manufacturer on the label is different.

Like the one being sold in France, the label prominently says it contains 0.05% fipronil as an active ingredient.

In Quiapo, Manila, for instance, Green Leaf Powder Cockroach Killing Bait is sold for P10 per sachet of five grams by some sidewalk vendors in Carriedo, Evangelista, Carlos Palanca, and Villalobos Streets.  Online sellers sell the product for P145 to P295 for a box of 50 sachets.

An unregistered product, Green Leaf Powder Cockroach Killing Bait did not go through the FDA’s evaluation process.  “The use of such a violative product may pose health risks to consumers,” according to the FDA.

“Potential hazards may come from harmful, toxic, and banned active ingredients that pose imminent danger to human and animal health. The use of substandard and possibly adulterated household/urban pesticide products may result in adverse reactions such as skin irritation, itchiness, anaphylactic shock, respiratory disorders, endocrine complications, brain damage, and organ failure,” the FDA warned.

Pesticide Action Network (PAN) has included fipronil on its list of highly hazardous pesticides (HHPs) for global phase-out due to its carcinogenicity and toxicity to bees.

According to a factsheet prepared by PAN Asia Pacific, “numerous cultural, mechanical and biological solutions to pest control, as well as natural sprays can be used instead of fipronil, depending on pest and situation.”

For the protection of human health and the ecosystems, the EcoWaste Coalition urged the public not to purchase and use the fipronil-containing Green Leaf Powder cockroach-killing bait. (PR)