• Kyodo

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The Shanghai Municipal Food and Drug Supervision Administration said Thursday it has found the banned substances chromium and neodymium in three more Japanese Max Factor SK-II cosmetic products, according to the official news agency Xinhua.

Last week, the Chinese authorities discovered the two metallic substances, banned from cosmetic products, in nine SK-II cosmetics imported from Japan.

The administration said they have now found the banned substances in a total of 12 Max Factor SK-II products, including three that were not listed by the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine a week ago.

Based on the finding, the administration called in senior management from Japan-based SK-II producer, Procter & Gamble, and told them to take all 12 products off the counter, it said.

The three newly incriminated products are SK-II facial treatment cleanser, wrinkle treatment mask and whitening source, Xinhua quoted the report released by the administration as saying.

Chromium can cause an allergic reaction such as a rash when it comes into contact with the skin. Neodymium is irritating to the eyes and skin, can cause lung embolisms and poses a danger to the liver if it accumulates in the human body, according to the report.

Though SK-II refused to admit there are any quality problems with its products, it agreed to accept customers returns of the products, the report said.

The AQSIQ has reported the issue to its Japanese counterpart and the Japanese Embassy in Beijing, saying its counterparts should increase its supervision of cosmetic products exported to China to ensure the products meet China’s standards, the Xinhua report said.

AQSIQ issued a circulation requiring local branches to strengthen the quality supervision of cosmetic products imported from Japan, according to the report.

China’s moves to curb sales of Japanese-made cosmetics and food are apparently aimed at countering Japan’s introduction in May of a “positive list” system for further restricting pesticide residue, which has led to a sharp decline in China’s farm produce exports to Japan, according to observers.

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