Science Media Centre

Science Media Centre


Call for triclosan ban – In the News

Posted in In the News

New Zealand scientists have joined an international group of 200 scientists and medical professionals calling for further restrictions on antimicrobial agents used in consumer products.

The Florence Statement, released this week, called for triclosan, triclocarban and other antimicrobial chemicals to be avoided, except in cases where there was a clear, evidence-based health benefit and adequate evidence for safety.

Cawthron Institute environmental toxicologist Dr Louis Tremblay said that soaps containing triclosan were shown to be no more effective at controlling the spread of disease than soaps without the antimicrobial agent, and they had been shown to have negative effects in the environment.

“Triclosan is put in hand soap in order to kill the bugs on our hands,” he told TVNZ. “Once it’s washed down the drain it enters the environment and there it plays the same role on bugs there.”

University of Auckland microbiologist Dr Siouxsie Wiles told TVNZ that evidence from animal studies suggested the products could have an effect on hormones, sperm quality and birth weight of babies.

“There’s no reason why the government can’t step in and say we should get rid of these products,” Dr Wiles said.

The SMC asked experts Dr Tremblay and University of Canterbury’s Dr Sally Gaw about triclosan products last year.

The Florence Statement was covered by local media, including:

NZ Herald: Calls for toxic chemicals used in soap and toothpaste to be banned
TVNZ: Anti-bacterial soaps, toothpaste and cosmetics claim to keep us healthy – but do they?
Radio NZ: Call to curb use of anti-bacterial chemicals

Continue reading “Call for triclosan ban – In the News

The Latest

Expert Reactions

European Court of Justice ruling on vaccines – Expert Reaction

The European Court of Justice has ruled that national courts can decide that vaccines can cause adverse reactions, even in the absence of scientific evidence. The ruling follows a case of a French patient who was vaccinated against hepatitis B in 1998 and developed multiple sclerosis a year later. Prior to his death in 2011, […]


Future of Housing – Expert Q&A

There’s no place like home, but owning your own home is harder than ever before. Leaky houses, sky-rocketing prices, and ever-increasing energy bills – what do experts have to say about the Future of Housing in New Zealand? In this Expert Q&A, the Science Media Centre asked experts in the field how design, technical innovation, […]

In the News

An eye on natural hazards – In the News

While researchers find out more about the risks and behaviours of volcanoes and earthquakes, a leading disaster risk reduction expert says we’re too focused on reacting to disasters rather than preparing for them. Former director for the UN’s Office of Disaster Risk Reduction Elizabeth Longworth spoke to Radio NZ ahead of a seminar on Monday […]

Reflections On Science

Water, water everywhere – Ian Fuller

Two environmental issues have dominated the news so far this election year, both focused on waterways, writes Massey University’s Associate Professor Ian Fuller in Hawkes Bay Today. An excerpt (read in full): Serious storms and flooding – and the resulting economic costs – have focused attention on the effects of climate change, while events like […]

Copyright 2017 Science Media Centre (New Zealand)

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy