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Johnson & Johnson will stop selling talc-based baby powder globally

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

Aug 15, 2022

Business |Beauty

Image: Unsplash by Jonathan Borba
Johnson & Johnson will discontinue its talc-based baby powder globally in 2023 and transition to its existing cornstarch-based baby powder, following thousands of lawsuits over cancer claims.

In a statement, Johnson & Johnson maintains that its product is safe to use, adding that it stands by decades of independent scientific analysis that shows that its talc-based baby powder “doesn’t contain asbestos, and does not cause cancer”.

However, due to the ongoing misinformation about its baby powder, it has decided to transition to a cornstarch-based product globally, following a worldwide portfolio assessment to ensure the business for long-term growth.

The cornstarch-based Johnson’s baby powder is already sold in countries around the world, and the move follows the company removing its talc-based products from shelves in the US and Canada in 2020.

“This transition will help simplify our product offerings, deliver sustainable innovation, and meet the needs of our consumers, customers and evolving global trends,” added Johnson & Johnson.

Analytics and consulting company GlobalData said that the move by Johnson & Johnson to discontinue its talc-based baby powder would help restore trust as 79 percent of consumers prefer ‘natural’ and ‘free from’ formulations.

Lia Neophytou, senior consumer analyst at GlobalData, commented: “The removal of Johnson & Johnson’s talc-based baby powder is a step in the right direction for the company to restore trust among risk-averse consumers who now more than ever seek trustworthy products and brands amid global uncertainty.

“Johnson & Johnson’s decision to shift away from talcum powder to an ‘all cornstarch-based baby powder portfolio’ will align with the ongoing demand for ‘natural’ formulations and reassure consumers that the firm is addressing their concerns—though Johnson & Johnson maintains that its original formulation is safe.”

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