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FDA list of toxic hand sanitizers expands to more than 80

Some companies have been replacing the active ingredient with poisonous methanol which is used in antifreeze.

Editor's note: The video above was published July 24. The FDA updated its list July 27.

The Food and Drug Administration has now flagged more than 80 varieties of hand sanitizers it says have tested positive for methanol contamination which can lead to blindness, heart problems and death.

The active ingredient that kills germs in legitimate sanitizers is ethyl alcohol, which is consumable. But some companies -- mostly from Mexico -- have been replacing it with poisonous methanol, or wood alcohol, which is used in antifreeze.

The FDA first issued a consumer warning about the products last month.

Last week the agency issued a warning letter to Mexican manufacturer Eskbiochem SA de V for marketing sanitizer containing more than 80% methanol and falsely claiming that it was “FDA approved.”

The FDA has posted a searchable “do-not-use” list on its website and blocked their importation. The agency said it is working with retailers to recall products remaining on U.S. store shelves. The illegitimate gels generally don’t list methanol as an ingredient on their packaging.

Walmart has issued recalls for two brands of sanitizers and Target has issued its own recall.

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