U.S. customs seizes over 20K fake Oral-B toothbrush heads

2019 12 03 21 41 3642 Fake Toothbrush Head 400

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seized 20,400 counterfeit Oral-B electric toothbrush heads, which were shipped from China and headed for a New Jersey property. If they had been authentic heads made by Procter & Gamble, they would have a value of about $96,000.

Poor packaging and questionable quality triggered the agents to detain the air cargo shipment in Philadelphia on October 1. The shipment, which contained 1,200 10-pack and 2,800 3-pack toothbrush heads labeled with the Oral-B logo, was seized on November 7 after agents were able to verify that the items were fake, according to the customs agency.

"CBP urges consumers to protect themselves and their families by purchasing authentic health and hygiene products from reputable vendors," said Casey Durst, director of field operations for the agency's Baltimore office.

Like all counterfeit healthcare products, fake toothbrush heads pose a serious health threat to consumers because they are manufactured in unsanitary facilities with substandard materials, the agency noted. Using brush heads that were made under those conditions puts people at risk for sickness and injuries to the mouth and gums. Also, structural defects may cause the brush head to detach, potentially causing a user to choke, it added.

The customs agency aggressively protects businesses and consumers from counterfeit, harmful merchandise through its enforcement program. In addition to threatening people's health and safety, counterfeit goods can cause significant revenue loss and damage to the U.S. economy.

On an average day in 2018, custom officers seized $3.7 million worth of products that violated a company's intellectual property rights.

"Customs and Border Protection will continue to work with our trade and consumer safety partners to identify and seize counterfeit consumer goods that threaten American shoppers, such as these potentially dangerous toothbrush heads," Durst said.

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