Jakarta (Greeners) – Indonesia’s Food and Drugs Monitoring Agency (BPOM) had confiscated illegal cosmetics and traditional medicine worth a total of Rp134.13 billion (US$9,207 million) in 2018.
Illegal cosmetics and/or contains toxic substance reaches up to Rp112 billion (US$7,688 million) and illegal traditional medicine and/or contains drugs reaches up to Rp22.13 billion (US$1,518 million).
The findings were resulted from the routine post-market control, cases reported, production facilities and retails monitoring by the agency throughout the country.
Head of the agency, Penny K. Lukito, said that illegal cosmetics were dominated by findings of mercury, hydroquinone and retinoic acid. In addition, the agency also found six cosmetics containing banned color ingredients (K3 red) and heavy metal (lead). Generally, the substances are carcinogenic, teratogenic, and cause skin irritation.
Meanwhile, for traditional medicine, the agency found substances dominated by sildenafil citrate, phenylbutazone, and paracetamol which have the risks of losing sight and hearing, stroke, heart attack, heart disease, gastritis, to kidney failure.
“All cosmetics found containing BD/BB and traditional medicines containing BKO have been followed up, administratively, including revoke permits, product withdrawal and recall from market and destroy [the products]. For illegal cosmetics and traditional medicine will be conducted with pro-justitia process,” said Lukito in Jakarta, on Wednesday (14/11/2018).
Furthermore, Lukito said that the agency had processed 36 cases of illegal traditional medicine with/without drugs and 45 cases of illegal cosmetics with/without toxic substances.
“The whole cases are being followed up by pro-justitia. For the past five years, the highest punishment for traditional medicine was two years prison and one billion rupiah of fine. Meanwhile, on illegal cosmetic cases, the highest was two years and six months of prison and one billion rupiah of fine,” she said.
She said people should be careful in purchasing food, cosmetics, and traditional medicine in e-commerce as while raided illegal products, the agency foiled illegal drugs worth of Rp17 billion (US$1,165 million).
“We found traditional medicine such as slimming medicine and viagra sold online where were working with Expindo, a freight forwarding service, to arrest the illegal products. It is inevitable that e-commerce is developing, hence, we also increase monitoring,” she said.
Meanwhile, deputy of traditional medicine, health supplement and cosmetics monitoring at the agency, Mayagustina Andarini, said that decreasing banned or illegal products is because of companies are aware of the strict monitoring of the agency.
“The decline, in average, is 50 percent from 2017 to 2018, from 19 items to six items. However, we need to stay alert despite of the decline,” said Andarini adding that companies putting fictional permit will be subject to criminal law with a maximum of 15 years in prison and Rp1.5 billion (US$102,805) of fine.
Reports by Dewi Purningsih