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The TGA has seized Bloodroot Salve (Black Salve) and Bloodroot Capsules during search warrant on the Gold Coast

31 May 2019

On Thursday 9 May 2019, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), in conjunction with Queensland Police Services and the Australian Taxation Office, executed a search warrant at a business premises on the Gold Coast, Queensland.

During the search, the TGA seized various items. This included 27 jars of suspected Bloodroot Salve (commonly known as Black Salve), 84 bottles of product suspected to be Triple Strength Bloodroot Capsules and 30 bottles of suspected Double Strength Bloodroot Capsules.

The operation was part of an investigation into the alleged importation, advertising and unauthorised supply of unapproved therapeutic goods, including scheduled medicines. A number of items and devices were also uncovered and seized, allegedly relating to manufacturing of therapeutic goods. Enquiries are still underway and further action will be dependent upon the outcome of investigations.

Bloodroot Salve, more commonly known as Black Salve, is a topical paste. It is commonly classified as an 'escharotic', as it is corrosive and can destroy skin tissue, causing disfigurement. Application can result in dead skin tissue and a thick dark scar. Bloodroot capsules may contain several of the same ingredients as Black Salve.

The TGA strongly advises consumers against purchasing or using Black Salve. For more information, check the safety alert on black and red salves.

There are no Black Salve products of any description included in the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG). Supply of Black Salve for any reason is prohibited.

The TGA oversees the regulation of therapeutic goods used in Australia, whether produced in Australia or elsewhere, or exported from Australia. The TGA implements a range of enforcement remedies to address illegal supply of unapproved therapeutic goods, including court-based outcomes and court enforceable actions. If an individual or company is identified as undertaking activity that falls within the remit of the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 (Cth), penalties can range from 12-months imprisonment and/or 1000 penalty units, to 5-years imprisonment and/or 4000 penalty units. An individual penalty unit is $210. The penalties are ultimately applied by the Court.

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