August 3, 2022

Hong Kong Customs confiscated a total of 429 boxes of whitening cream that were suspected to be unsafe to use and could harm skin health from importing retailers in Tsim Sha Tsui and its warehouse in Yuen Long, Thursday (16/5/2019).

Through a media release, Customs said it had previously carried out a test operation to buy whitening cream from the local market for safety testing and found that the mercury content of the whitening cream samples exceeded the permissible limits specified in the relevant safety standards.

Based on the test results, customs officials carried out day-to-day operations and confiscated a number of whitening creams from retailers and importers in Tsim Sha Tsui and their warehouses in Yuen Long. As well as making appeals and prohibitions to importers as well as retailers, regarding the prohibition of continuing the sale of this type of whitening cream.

Under the Consumer Goods Safety Ordinance (CGSO), it is an offense to supply, manufacture or import Hong Kong consumer goods unless the goods meet general safety requirements for consumer goods.

The maximum penalty if convicted is a fine of HK$100,000 and imprisonment for one year for the first sentence, and HK$500,000 and imprisonment for two years for a subsequent sentence for repeat offences.

In addition to continuing to carry out spot checks with the aim of protecting consumer safety, Customs and Excise also reminds traders to comply with CGSO requirements. Citizens are also reminded not to buy or use whitening creams with unknown compositions or obtained from dubious sources.

If they know information related to unsafe consumer goods, the public can make a report via the Customs 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or a dedicated crime reporting email account.

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