Chemicals, be they are extracted from nature or are made synthetically, have their own risk once it made contact with human bodies. Therefore, the use of them must have some limits of use.
Countries in the world recognize it and the government of each country set regulations for the use of those chemicals. Some chemicals are permitted in a specific country, whereas in different countries, the chemicals are prohibited to be utilized in any form of use just like South Africa with their List of Banned Chemicals in South Africa or UAE with their own List of Chemicals and Hazardous Materials Banned & Restricted in UAE.
One of the countries that have its own regulation over chemical use in order to protect their citizen is Philippines. Located in the South East Asia, Philippines is among the countries in which the traffic of illegal chemical smuggling across continents is considered high. Thus, people should be aware of which chemical is permitted or not. Here is the list of banned chemicals in Philippines by The Food and Drug Administration of the Philippines.
1. Mercuric Fungicide
Mercuric fungicide is often contained in pesticide. Its original function was to control and eliminate fungi. However, the mercuric element used in it is considered as dangerous for living being. The mercury element is known for its carcinogenic tendency due to its nature of composition. The liquid mercury (Hg) vaporized and absorbed through inhalation, while the inorganic one is usually coming from industrial waste.
Yet, the most deadly mercury is the organic one where the mercury is consumed by living being and transmitted through food chain, for example, mercury’s expose through pesticide will spread through and consumed by other living beings. Only 10 percent of organic mercury can be digested, the rest will stay in the body and trigger the growth of cancerous cell. Seeing such danger, any kind of products containing mercury, including pesticide, is banned. Also read: List of Toxic Chemicals Severely Restricted for Import and Export
2. Azinphos Etyl
Another chemical listed as banned in PICCS (Inventory of Chemicals and Chemical Substance (PICCS) is Azinphos Etyl. This chemical compound consists of C12H16N3O3PS2 in the form of colorless crystal. The component was often found in insecticide.
However, closer inspection found it to be too dangerous for casual use due to its nature of staying inside the body and causing disfiguration, especially to mammals. Subject to this danger, the Food and Drug Administration of the Philippines have prohibited the use of it in any kind of products outside legal research. (Related about Harmful List Of Banned Food Additives In Many Countries )
3. Polychlorinated Biphenyls
Polychlorinated Byphenyls is an organochlorine chemical that is persistent to nature, another list of banned chemicals in Philippines. It will stay where it was first sprayed or spread in despite being contaminated by other organic chemicals. Also known as PCB, this chemical consists of 209 compound of organochloride configuration (C12H10-xCLx). The chemical was commonly found in adhesives, electromagnets, vacuum pump, microwave and many more.
Due to its persistent nature, many countries limit the use of this chemical because if it gets accumulated within one’s body, it can trigger carcinogenic cell and fatal health problem. In Philippines, this chemical is banned from domestic use as well as the imported one as issued by Philippines Custom Regulation and International Trade Administration.
Endosulfan is deemed as one of the most toxic elements ever used in industry. The use of it has garnered many controversies, especially since one of the biggest pesticide company in Philippines tried to steer the use of it in order to receive grant to use it in one of their products.
Endosulfan is a compound of polychlorinated chemical. Insoluble in water, the chemical persists on staying in mud and soil and can harm many organism who consume their food around the infected area. The side effect of having this compound is a problem in the nerve system since it will be absorbed to brain.
The nerve will start discharging, and for the worst, may cause death for living organism because it has the bioaccumulation tendency of staying within one’s body and stay indigested.
5. Sodium Fluoroacetate
Even though sodium fluoracetate is water soluble, the chemcial is still lethal especially for mammals. Sodium fluoracetate is one of organoflourine compound derived from fluoroacetate acid has the formula of FCH2CO2Na. the chemical originally derivated from organic plants.
Nonetheless, it was classified as poison back in 1942. The toxicity of Sodium Fluoroacetate is endangering and many countries restrict the use of it. Philipphines’ FDA has issued the ban of this chemical due to the danger it exposes. It can wreck nerve system, prevent the absorption of carbohydrate, and cardiac abnormalities. Humans are not immune of it and for worst case, can also cause death if not treated early.
Another product that is subject to harmful chemical is cosmetic. The traffic of products export in Philippines is high and as a result, some illegal products are being sold without the consent of FDA Philippines. One of harmful chemical commonly found in cosmetic product is cadmium.
Cadmium belongs to metal material along with mercury. The cadmium of metal use itself is not prohibited, but the use of it for a product that is supposed to be digested is highly hazardous. The chemicals accumulated in skin or body can trigger digestion and breathing problem, as well as being carcinogenic by generating cancerous cell. Thus, Philippines’ FDA and Custom Regulation ban any cosmetic that contains this chemical.
Toxaphene was created over a combination of more than 670 chemical. The sole purpose of toxaphene is as insecticide. Commonly found in farming, the chemical gradually is banned by various countries including Philippines. The reason is because the nature of toxaphene is persistent as well as water insoluble.
If this occurs, it can cause bioaccumulation in which toxin is kept and transferred from one living being to another. Not only it is harmful for animals, food sources and water that are contaminated by this chemical will affect human’s health.
Exposure to high accumulation of this will cause internal organs damage. If this cycle keeps going, it will eventually lead to death. Due to this danger, toxaphene is deemed as a globally banned chemical.
The list of banned chemicals in Philippines surely are not without reasons. Seeing how dangerous the chemicals are both for short-term and long-term use, it is highly advisable to always check the update banned chemicals from government’s official website. Meanwhile, there are more Dangerous Chemicals in Everyday Products we need to avoid.