Johnson & Johnson to Stop Selling Talc Baby Power in US, Canada

Johnson & Johnson announced Tuesday it will stop selling one of its flagship products — talc-based baby powder — in the United States and Canada.The pharmaceutical company said its decision is part of a “portfolio reassessment related to COVID-19.”But J&J is facing more than 16,000 lawsuits from consumers who claim the powder is contaminated with asbestos and caused their cancer.”Demand for talc-based Johnson’s Baby Powder in North America has been declining due in large part to changes in consumer habits and fueled by misinformation around the safety of the product and a constant barrage of litigation advertising,” J&J said in a statement.A New Jersey judge ruled last month that the claims against J&J can proceed, but the judge put limits on how far expert testimony can go.J&J insists its baby power is safe and says it has “decades of scientific studies” to back it up.But tests last year by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration uncovered what the FDA says were “trace” amounts of asbestos.Johnson & Johnson started selling talc-based baby power in 1894, but says it counts for just 0.5% of its consumer health goods sales.It says it will sell off its remaining stock of the powder in the U.S. and Canada but will continue to sell it — along with its cornstarch-based powder — in other countries.  

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