Health Canada issues recall for brands of hand sanitizer

Health Canada has issued a recall for more than 40 brands of hand sanitizer saying they contain industrial-grade ethanol that makes them hazardous if consumed.

The list can be found at https://bit.ly/3jwPwWR. The products were found to contain either ethyl acetate or methanol.

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The list, updated Tuesday, refers to particular lot numbers for each type of brand. They can be returned to local pharmacies for proper disposal, the agency says.

A similar list for products found to contain unapproved versions of technical-grade ethanol was updated on Friday. It can be found at https://bit.ly/30DLAep.

In answer shortages of pharmaceutical- and food-grade ethanol, Health Canada has pemitted the temporary use of technical-grade ethanol in alcohol-based hand sanitizers. However, they had to choose from a list of authorized suppliers and have received a no objection letter from Health Canada before manufacturing or distributing the product.

Technical-grade ethanol contains more impurities than pharmaceutical- and food-grade ethanol.

As well, a separate recall list for 23 brands that contain industrial-grade ethanol was updated on Friday. It can be found at https://bit.ly/2CH1Ran.

A list of disinfectants and hand sanitizers accepted by Health Canada under the COVID -19 interim measure is found at https://bit.ly/30GfpuD.

The agency also says the best option is to wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. "Use alcohol-based hand sanitizers if soap and water are not available."

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