Call for ban on potentially harmful cosmetics

The number of cosmetic products containing harmful paraben chemicals has gone up in Sweden, according to the Chemicals Agency. The Society for Nature Conservation now wants to ban the substance in products aimed at children under three years of age.

The organisation wants to ban two types of parabens, propylparaben and butylparaben, as they may hurt boys' fertility and testosterone production.

"The starting point for chemical policies must be caution, which means we have to wait for full scientific evidence," says Mikael Karlsson, chairman of the Society for Nature Conservation.

Sweden has previously applied such caution when dealing with the chemical Bisfenol A in, for instance, canned foods. In Denmark, a ban against parabens in products aimed at young children is in place.

Environment Minister Lena Ek told Swedish Radio that a ban in Sweden may not have such a great effect, as few consumer products on shelves here are manufactured in Sweden.

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