Taipei-A random inspection of 20 commercially available summer sleeping mats discovered five samples that contained excessive amounts of the preservative formaldehyde, a known carcinogen, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Friday.
According to the ministry's Bureau of Standards, Metrology and Inspection (BSMI), the samples were selected from among an assortment of retailers in the first half of this year and the products were ordered off the shelves after the violations were discovered.
Despite its widespread use as a commercial preservative, formaldehyde is classified as a carcinogen, and in excessive amounts can cause respiratory tract infections, headaches, an abnormally high heart rate and skin irritation, the BSMI said.
The tests also revealed labeling violations on three products, for failing to properly display in Chinese the manufacturer's name, contact information, or the product's date of manufacture, the bureau said.
The BSMI advised consumers against purchasing sleeping mats with unclear labels or a strong chemical smell, and recommended thoroughly washing and sun-drying new mats before use.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel