Tainted Toothpaste Has Customers Worrying About Discount Dangers

Discount stores are a popular place to shop for many East Texans. If you're on a budget, you can buy snacks, clothing and household items without breaking the bank, but dollar stores may not always be the best place to buy toothpaste, medicines, and certain other items.

Rachel Weintraub, Product Safety Director for the Consumer Federation of America, said, "Most consumers actually think that products are tested by somebody to make sure that the product that they're buying on the shelf is safe, but that's not the case at all."

But East Texas customers said that won't stop them from buying products at discount stores. Most of them said they already pay close attention to the labeling on certain items.

Tammy Craig of Huntington said, "I'm very selective in the products that I buy and you just read your labels."

It's not easy, but it is possible to tell the difference between real products and fake items. Counterfeit products often have misspellings on the packaging. You should avoid buying products labeled for sale in other countries, because they may not meet American health standards and can be harmful to your health.

Julie Vallese of the Consumer Product Safety Commission said, "The C.P.S.C. looks for hazardous products across the board and as of right now, about 60 percent of the products recalled in the last fiscal year have been from China."

And you are more likely to find bogus toothpaste, shampoo and other items at flea markets and discount stores, even though some have made it onto shelves in mainstream stores.