EcoWaste Coalition Finds More Unregistered Household Insecticides in the Market, Cautions Public from Using Insect Killers from China with Cypermethrin

The EcoWaste
Coalition, a chemical safety and zero waste advocacy group, has cautioned the
public against  using unregistered insect killers after finding six brands
of household insecticides with cypermethrin as an active ingredient.

Taking its cue from the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) which recently
ordered the seizure of cypermethrin-containing Baolilai, Big Bie Pai and
Tianshi aerosol insecticides, the EcoWaste Coalition’s AlerToxic Patrol went to
Divisoria and Santa Cruz, Manila last Friday and Saturday to look for
similar insecticides imported from China that are illegally sold without
authorization from the FDA.

“Apart from finding aerosol insect killers already forbidden by the FDA, we
found six other brands of cypermethrin-containing insecticides that should be
banned and taken off store shelves without delay,” said Thony Dizon,
Coordinator of the EcoWaste Coalition’s Project Protect.

These six brands of imported household insecticides, sold for P75 to P90
each and packaged in tall colorful aerosol cans with net weight of 750 ml
and with cypermethrin content ranging from 0.05% to 0.15% as stated on the
labels, include Angel Insecticide Aerosol, Boclliai Aerosol Insecticide,
Kingever Aerosol Insecticide, Kingever Insect Killer,  Power Boss Aerosol
Insecticide and Txaksi Insect Killer.

In addition, the EcoWaste Coalition also found three variants of Brother
Powerful Insecticide with no cypermethrin content, but like the
above-mentioned insecticides had no FDA market authorization.

The group yesterday alerted the FDA of its findings through an e-mail.

“The public should know that these insecticides are dangerous to human and
environmental health and should desist  from bringing them into their
homes where these products can present real hazard, especially to young
children,” Dizon said.

Dizon sought the cooperation of the Bureau of Customs to prevent the entry of
such dangerous insecticides into the country’s ports as he called upon
importers and retailers to abide by the law and discontinue the illicit trade.

Cypermethrin, according to the FDA advisory, “is a broad spectrum insecticide
which kills target and non-target beneficial insects as well as susceptible
animals, especially aquatic organisms.”

“Effects on test animals include, but are not limited to, reduced fertility and
reproductive rate, carcinogenic and co-carcinogenic effects through topical
route, and systemic genotoxicity in mammals as it causes DNA damage in vital
organs,” the FDA said.

The US Environmental Protection Agency has classified cypermethrin as a
possible human carcinogen.

According to a fact sheet published by the Pesticide Action Network Asia and
the Pacific (PANAP), cypermethrin is the “most frequent child chronic
pesticide exposure in UK,” “children have been poisoned in
Nicaragua and Mexico”and that “death from contaminated food has

In the Philippines, the UP National Poison Management and Control Center
reported  that a three-year old boy accidentally sprayed himself in August
2014 with Big Bie Pai insecticide and experienced abdominal pain, diarrhea
and vomiting.

Symptoms of poisoning with cypermethrin include dizziness, nausea, headaches,
burning skin, tingling, anorexia, muscle twitching, seizures  and coma,
the PANAP said.

As for its environmental effects, cypermethrin is highly toxic to fish, algae
and aquatic invertebrates, as well as to bees, beneficial insects and
earthworms, the PANAP said, adding that in terms of environmental fate
cypermethrin is a severe marine pollutant, is persistent in soil and has the
potential for bio-accumulation.