The cancer causing agent formaldehyde can be found in an unlikely product, Johnson & Johnson’s baby shampoo. Johnson & Johnson has promised to remove the preservative responsible for releasing the carcinogen, though no plan has been announced for how to deal with the contaminated products still on the shelves. Consumer groups are calling the decision a victory, though they have called for a specific timeline by which J & J will commit to ending the use of the offending preservative.
Prior to the decision by Johnson & Johnson, consumers had planned a boycott of all the company’s products. The quick reaction by consumers may have come from the shock of having the safety of one of the most trusted and well-known products for babies called into question. Johnson & Johnson does make it clear on their website that all the chemicals used in its baby shampoo formulation are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The quantities of formaldehyde fall below the limit allowed by the FDA and are considered a “trace” amount
Consumer safety groups play an important role in ensuring that unsafe products such as defective toys, contaminated food and other dangerous goods do not harm consumers. While the CDC can issue recalls and the FDA can set guidelines, dangerous products are still responsible for countless injuries and deaths every year. If you have been injured by a defective product, it is important to speak up and hold the designer, manufacturer and retailer accountable for the harm done to you. By protecting your rights, you help prevent others from suffering similar harm.
Source: Medill Reports, “Rub-a-dub-dub, ‘toxic’ bathtub? Manufacturer promises to phase out chemical,”Molly Fedick, 2 November 2011