FDA Recalls More Hand Sanitizers Due to Presence of Methanol

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has expanded the list of hand sanitizers being recalled to at least 75. The recall is being issued as toxic levels of methanol or wood alcohol in the recalled products may cause injury or death. The FDA has indicated that there has been an increase in hand sanitizers that are labeled as containing ethyl alcohol, or ethanol, but, instead, have tested positive for methanol, or wood alcohol. If methanol is absorbed through the skin, it can cause blindness and hospitalizations, or death if ingested.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, health officials have continuously urged Americans to wash their hands for 20 seconds at a time or to use hand sanitizer to protect against exposure to COVID-19, the coronavirus that causes the respiratory disease. The demand for hand sanitizer has surged and questionable new brands have made their way to store shelves across the United States, most imported from Mexico.

The FDA listed an import alert on a number of hand sanitizers to stop the products from entering the U.S., including:
• Blumen products
• Klar and Danver Instant Hand Sanitizer (labeled with Greenbrier International)
• Modesa Instant Hand Sanitizer Moisturizers and Vitamin E
• Hello Kitty by Sanrio Hand Sanitizer
• Assured Aloe

For the complete list, go to FDA hand sanitizer updates. 

Since May, at least seven people have died and dozens have been hospitalized in Arizona and New Mexico after ingesting hand sanitizer containing methanol, according to state health officials. At least some of the cases were related to alcoholism, officials have said. Though hand sanitizer should not be consumed, some people have been drawn to its high alcohol content.

Consumers are encouraged to check the FDA's regularly updated list for dangerous hand sanitizers before buying an unknown brand. For more information, or if you have questions please contact Printing United Alliance’s Government Affairs Department at govtaffairs@printing.org.