June 14, 2007 -- The Colgate-Palmolive Co. today warned that counterfeit toothpaste falsely labeled as "Colgate" has been found in four states and may contain a poisonous chemical called diethylene glycol (DEG).
The counterfeit product has been found in "several dollar-type discount stores" in Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania, states a Colgate-Palmolive news release.
"There are indications that this product does not contain fluoride and may contain Diethylene Glycol," says Colgate-Palmolive, which says it "does not use, nor has ever used, Diethylene Glycol as an ingredient in Colgate toothpaste anywhere in the world."
Colgate-Palmolive says 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," and "South African Dental Assoxiation."
Counterfeit toothpaste is not manufactured or distributed by Colgate and has no connection with Colgate-Palmolive whatsoever. Colgate says it's working closely with the FDA to help to identify those responsible for the counterfeit product.
Colgate-Palmolive says consumers who suspect they may have purchased counterfeit product can call Colgate's toll-free phone number, (800) 468-6502.