The Food and Drug Administration has called on hand sanitizer manufacturers to make their products “unpalatable” to discourage people from ingesting it.
“With this increased supply comes our continued mission to ensure safety of these products. It is important that hand sanitizer be manufactured in a way that makes them unpalatable to people, especially young children, and that they are appropriately labeled to discourage accidental or intentional ingestion,” the statement said.
It is also recommended that manufacturers add denaturants to the alcohol, to make it “more bitter and less appealing to ingest.” (RELATED: Trump Signs Executive Order Cracking Down On Price Gouging For Masks, Ventilators)
Calls to the National Poison Data System related to hand sanitizer increased 79% in March 2020 when compared to the year prior. The majority of the calls, the statement says, were for unintentional exposures in children 5 years of age or younger.
“Additionally, hand sanitizers are not proven to treat COVID-19, and like other products meant for external use, are not for ingestion, inhalation, or intravenous use.”
A warning was issued last week to Prefense LLC for its claim that their product could “protect you from pathogens up to 24 hours or for 10 hand washes.”
“The FDA is not aware of any evidence that hand sanitizer products can protect consumers for 24 hours or after multiple hand-washings. These types of claims may put consumers at risk by leading to a false sense of security and resulting in infrequent hand washing or hand sanitizing,” the statement reads.