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It’s back! Chemical tagged in milk tea deaths 2 years ago being sold again in Manila

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Oxalic acid, the ingredient tagged in the deaths of two people who drank milk tea in Manila in 2015, is back and being sold in the streets of Manila.

Ecological group EcoWaste Coalition said repacked oxalic acid is sold in the Quiapo and Divisoria areas for P20 to P120 per pack.

It wrote the Manila City Health Department about the matter, warning oxalic acid is a potentially lethal bleaching compound.

Group coordinator Anthony Dizon said the packs, sold along with sodium hypochlorite (chlorine granules) and ammonium alum (tawas), are sold without any labeling information or hazard warning .

The group said it found the substance being sold at Juan Luna cor. Ylaya Streets and in M. de Santos corner Carmen Planas Streets in Divisoria; and in Plaza Miranda, Evangelista Street and Quezon Boulevard in Quiapo.

“In Divisoria, we found oxalic acid being sold together with kitchen condiments such as chili flakes, curry powder, ground pepper, skimmed milk, wheat flour and turmeric powder,” Dizon said.

Meanwhile, Dizon said herbalists in Quiapo sell oxalic acid alongside asupre, incense rock, healing oil, medicinal herbs and herbal concoctions.

The group urged city health authorities and city police to stop the sale of oxalic acid.