Two unregistered health products from China being sold online in Singapore; some listings already removed


As at Tuesday, June 25, 2024, at least two listings of the cream were seen on Shopee, with one from Mainland China. - PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM SHOPEE via The Straits Times/ANN

SINGAPORE (The Straits Times/ANN): Two unregistered health products are being sold here through online platforms, with the authorities advising consumers to be cautious of products that promise miraculous effects or make exaggerated claims.

Checks by The Straits Times showed listings of Yunnan Herbal Blister cream (transliteration: yun nan ben cao han pao zhen) on e-commerce platforms Shopee and Lazada.

As at June 25, at least two listings of the cream were seen on Shopee – one from mainland China.

The product is claimed to be an antibacterial and anti-itch blister cream.

On Lazada, at least one listing of the same product from a seller in China was spotted.

Earlier, Chinese newspaper Lianhe Zaobao reported that the cream, as well as Baiyun Mountain Herbal Mole Spotting Set (bai yun shan xing qun ben cao dian zhi tao zhuang), were also sold on TikTok live broadcasts, with prices in Singapore dollars indicated.

In response to queries, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) said both products are not registered in Singapore.

The authority said it “works closely with administrators of local social media and e-commerce platforms to regularly monitor, detect and remove sale listings or live-streaming videos selling illegal health products in Singapore”.

These include products that are unregistered, counterfeit, or contain potent medicinal ingredients and banned substances.

Local sellers of illegal health products can be jailed for up to two years, fined up to $50,000, or both, if convicted.

However, its investigations showed that the online listings and live streaming of the products are based overseas and out of its legal jurisdiction.

When contacted, a Shopee spokesperson said the company is aware of the two products and “action has already been taken against the relevant listings”, without elaborating.

The spokesperson said Shopee has a “strict zero-tolerance approach to the sale of prohibited items” on its platform, and would notify sellers, remove listings and ban sellers if necessary, when such listings are identified.

A TikTok spokesperson said that the unregistered products have been removed from its platform and sellers were given warnings.

He added that the firm has policies on prohibited products and takes action against products and sellers that violate these policies.

ST has contacted Lazada for more information.

HSA urges consumers to be careful when buying health products from unfamiliar sources such as live-streaming platforms, as they cannot be sure where and how these products were made. The products could also contain harmful ingredients.

“It is important to be cautious of products that purport miraculous effects or make exaggerated claims, as such products may contain potent ingredients that may harm your health,” HSA said.

When buying health products online, consumers are encouraged to buy from reputable pharmacies or retailers’ websites or those with an established retail presence in Singapore, it added. - The Straits Times/ANN

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Singapore , Health Products , Unregistered , Sold , Online

   

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