Cosmetic counterfeit: MoH enhanced controls
Cosmetic counterfeit represents a steady-growing phenomenon. Its turnover is believed to be approx. 600 billions dollars per year, 5-7% of the world market. These alarming data urged the MoH to include the fight against counterfeiting among the strategic objectives for 2012. There will be more controls, more targeted actions, a greater involvement of the Anti-Counterfeiting National Council and of the national task force against pharmaceutical counterfeiting (IMPACT), more training and information for the parties involved by the phenomenon (government institutions, police, professionals and consumers).
Consumers have a prominent role in the global strategy adopted by the Ministry of Health in the fight against cosmetic counterfeiting. The communication published by the Ministry of Health on this subject - reported below - includes a series of recommendations to consumers, first of all the invitation to buy cosmetic products from the official distribution channels as perfume shops, pharmacies and supermarkets, thus avoiding any encouragement to counterfeiting.
Tests carried out on confiscated products highlighted the presence of irritating and allergenic substances in counterfeited products, as well as heavy metals such as mercury and lead, which are forbidden by the regulation in force. These may result in unpleasant side effects ranging from simple redness, itching or burning up to bacterial skin infections.
Therefore the Ministry of Health has invited the consumers to always check the cosmetic labels carefully, which should report the manufacturing batch and the country of origin for products manufactured outside EU. Consumers should also pay attention to any information regarding the product ingredients and to comply with the precaution for use, the expiry date and the shelf-life after the first opening.
The Italian Cosmetic Law provides for that the label of each product should list all ingredients, so that consumers who are allergic or sensitive to specific substances can detect them before buying the product.
REGULATION EC 1223/2009