Once upon a time, US healthcare giant Johnson and Johnson (J&J) ruled the market of kids toiletries. We all know J&J offers a range of toiletries for toddlers that include shampoo, baby lotion, baby soap and baby oil. We have heard enough controversies about the safety of the products.
Now again, J&J has come under the scanner of regulators in India after the company’s popular baby shampoo failed quality tests carried out by the Drugs Control Organization of Rajasthan.
The shampoo samples revealed presence of Formaldehyde, which is a known cancer causing chemical. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies formaldehyde as a human carcinogen. In 2014, in response to consumer pressure, J&J had claimed to have removed this potentially harmful chemical-formaldehyde.
The state’s drug regulatory body has labelled some samples of J&J’s baby shampoo as not of standard quality and said the product contains harmful ingredients.
In 2014, the company had restructured the shampoo and dozens of other products after several consumers raised concerns about the presence of formaldehyde and another potentially harmful substance, 1,4-dioxane.
According to a January 2014 report in The New York Times, the company had promised at the time that the products no longer contain the two potentially harmful chemicals, formaldehyde and 1,4-dioxane, that have come under increasing scrutiny by consumers and environmental groups.
Johnson & Johnson says that it has removed the preservatives that release formaldehyde and has reduced the levels of 1,4-dioxane to very limited trace amounts, from one to four parts per million.
The controversy comes just a month after Johnson & Johnson resumed the production of its baby powder in India after government agencies ruled it free of asbestos, another cancer-causing substance.
It’s high time for us to rethink about the safety of the product before using.