Investigation Reveals Johnson & Johnson Knew About Asbestos In Its Talcum Powder For Decades
The company is facing thousands of lawsuits alleging that Johnson & Johnson talc powder contained carcinogenic asbestos. J&J officials have maintained that the product is safe, but internal memos examined by Reuters show that it has been a concern behind the company's closed doors for decades.
J&J Knew For Decades That Asbestos Lurked In Its Baby Powder
Facing thousands of lawsuits alleging that its talc caused cancer, J&J insists on the safety and purity of its iconic product. But internal documents examined by Reuters show that the company's powder was sometimes tainted with carcinogenic asbestos and that J&J kept that information from regulators and the public. (Girion, 12/14)
The New York Times:
Asbestos Opens New Legal Front In Battle Over Johnson’s Baby Powder
The memos were concise and direct. An executive at Johnson & Johnson said the main ingredient in its best-selling baby powder could potentially be contaminated by asbestos, the dangerous mineral that can cause cancer. He recommended to senior staff in 1971 that the company “upgrade” its quality control of talc. Two years later, another executive raised a red flag, saying the company should no longer assume that its talc mines were asbestos-free. The powder, he said, sometimes contained materials that “might be classified as asbestos fiber.” (Rabin and Hsu, 12/14)
The New York Times:
What Is Talc, Where Is It Used And Why Is Asbestos A Concern?
Nearly 12,000 women have sued Johnson & Johnson, with most claiming the talc in its well-known product Johnson’s Baby Powder caused their ovarian cancer. They now have a new potential legal front.In a recent case, a group of plaintiffs argued that the talc was contaminated with asbestos, a carcinogen considered unsafe at any level of exposure. A jury agreed with them, and awarded them $4.69 billion in damages in July. (Rabin, 12/14)