Johnson & Johnson announced in a media statement earlier this month that it will permanently discontinue the manufacture and sale of its talc-based Baby Powder worldwide by 2023. The decision comes more than two years after the company permanently halted talcum powder sales in the United States and Canada, claiming that demand had decreased as a result of “misinformation” about the safety of talcum powder amid an influx of legal cases. The company’s highly-anticipated decision to replace its talc-based powder products with cornstarch globally comes amid growing concerns about asbestos contamination in talc and the potential link between talcum powder and cancer. If you or someone you love developed cancer after using Johnson’s talcum powder, contact Consumer Safety Watch today. We can help put you in touch with a skilled product liability attorney with experience handling talcum powder cancer claims.
It was in May 2020 that Johnson & Johnson announced that it would discontinue talc-based Johnson’s Baby Powder in the U.S. and Canada. The manufacturer blamed the move on decreased demand due to “changes in consumer habits and fueled by misinformation around the safety of the product and a constant barrage of litigation advertising.” At that time, Johnson & Johnson promised that it would continue selling its iconic talcum powder products in the UK and the rest of the world, where consumer demand for the products was evidently higher. The healthcare giant made this abundantly clear in its statement, declaring that “Johnson & Johnson remains steadfastly confident in the safety of talc-based Johnson’s Baby Powder.” The company went on to boast that, “Decades of scientific studies by medical experts around the world support the safety of our product,” and that it “will continue to vigorously defend the product, its safety, and the unfounded allegations against it and the Company in the courtroom.” Within just two years, however, Johnson & Johnson has opted to permanently discontinue its signature talc-based baby powder products across the globe.
No doubt Johnson & Johnson’s decision to switch from talc to cornstarch in all markets worldwide is due in large part to the thousands of lawsuits that have been brought against the manufacturer by consumers who have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, mesothelioma, and other cancers. Each product liability lawsuit raises similar allegations that Johnson & Johnson knew for decades that its talcum powder products could cause cancer and failed to warn consumers about this potentially life-threatening health risk. Plaintiffs in the growing talcum powder litigation have won some major cases against Johnson & Johnson, including a massive $2 billion dollar verdict awarded to 22 women who claimed that they developed ovarian cancer from using Johnson’s talcum powder. In 2020, the company agreed to pay $100 million to resolve 1,000 claims in the talcum powder multidistrict litigation (MDL). However, there are still more than 37,000 lawsuits pending in the federal MDL, which is being overseen by U.S. District Judge Freda L. Wolfson in the District of New Jersey.
Just because Johnson & Johnson has agreed to settle some of the pending talcum powder lawsuits does not mean the world’s largest manufacturer of healthcare products is accepting responsibility for any harm allegedly caused by its talc-based Baby Powder. On the contrary, in an attempt to spin off future talc liabilities, Johnson & Johnson earlier this year transferred all of its liability for talcum powder claims into a newly formed entity with just $2 billion in assets and had that entity file for bankruptcy. If the company’s controversial plan works, a $2 billion fund would be established to resolve all present and future talcum powder claims and Johnson & Johnson would ultimately escape liability for these claims.
At Consumer Safety Watch, we know how devastating it can be to suffer serious or possibly even life-threatening injuries from using a consumer product you believed to be safe. Once the most trusted name in healthcare, Johnson & Johnson’s reputation has plummeted in the wake of thousands of talcum powder cancer claims. If you or a loved one routinely used Johnson’s Baby Powder and you were subsequently diagnosed with ovarian cancer, mesothelioma, or another type of cancer, do not hesitate to seek legal advice. An experienced talcum powder cancer attorney can help you pursue a reasonable settlement to resolve your claim.