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Fry’s Electronics Fined $50,000 by U.S. EPA for Making Unsubstantiated Health Claims

Release Date: 08/02/2013
Contact Information: David Yogi, yogi.david@epa.gov, (415) 972-3350

San Jose, Calif.-based company no longer sells unregistered gaming equipment wipe

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announces electronics retailer Fry’s Electronics has agreed to pay a $50,000 penalty to settle a case against the company for importing and selling an unregistered gaming equipment wipe that falsely claimed to be anti-bacterial and anti-pathogenic.

“Before putting any products on the floor for sale, retailers must ensure they are in compliance with federal environmental laws,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “EPA will continue to work with our state counterparts to ensure that products do not make unverified claims about health benefits.”

Evidence collected during an inspection by the California Department of Pesticide Regulation in February 2010 and a follow-up EPA investigation led EPA to issue a complaint against Fry’s Electronics for the improper importation, sale and distribution of Cambre Products’ Game On brand “Dirt Rags.” After being contacted by EPA, Fry’s Electronics promptly pulled the product from its shelves nationwide.

Fry’s Electronics is based in San Jose, Calif., and has stores throughout California and in eight other states. The manufacturer of the gaming control wipes, Cambre Products, is headquartered in Toronto, Canada.

Products that claim to kill or repel bacteria or germs are considered pesticides, and must be registered with EPA before their sale or distribution, pursuant to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). The Agency will not register a pesticide until it has been tested to show that it will not pose an unreasonable risk to human health or the environment when used according to the approved label directions. Consumers should carefully follow the directions for proper use, and to look for the EPA registration number printed on product labels.

For more information on FIFRA and its enforcement, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/oecaagct/lfra.html

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