Charles Pierce, P&G’s group president of global oral care and new business creation, shared the company’s aims to expand its tooth-whitening products – currently on sale in the US, China and Brazil – into Europe, during a briefing in New York last week.
Current EU rules mean that products in which the hydrogen peroxide, or bleach, content is between 0.1% and 6% can only be offered by dentists and cannot be sold in shops.
Products containing more than 6% hydrogen peroxide are completely banned. The latest report from the European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Consumer Products said: "Because of the increasing risks of acute and long-term effects, tooth-whitening products containing greater than 6.0% hydrogen peroxide are not considered safe for use by the consumer."
However, P&G’s Crest Whitestrips – which have been available in the US since 2001 – contain between 6% and 10% hydrogen peroxide, while its 3D White mouthwash is 1.5% hydrogen peroxide.