Johnson & Johnson, makers of Aveeno, Neutrogena, and Johnson’s Baby Shampoo, will be removing carcinogens and other toxic chemicals from its baby and adult products globally. Lisa Archer, director of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics at the Breast Cancer Fund, a co-founder of the campaign, stated:
This is a major victory for public health. We applaud Johnson & Johnson for its leadership in committing to remove cancer-causing chemicals from its products. We will be vigilant in making sure it meets its commitments and will continue to encourage it to remove other ingredients of concern. And we call on other cosmetics giants – Avon, Estee Lauder, L’Oreal, Procter & Gamble and Unilever – to meet or beat J&J’s commitments and signal they take consumer safety as seriously as their competitor. As always, we encourage consumers to seek out the safest products for their families and support companies that are avoiding chemicals of concern.
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics has launched a national campaign challenging L’Oreal (Maybelline, Garnier, Kiehl’s, The Body Shop, Softsheen-Carson), Procter & Gamble (CoverGirl, Pantene, Secret, Old Spice), Estee Lauder (Clinique, MAC, Prescriptives), Avon, and Unilever (Dove, Ponds, St. Ives, Axe) to follow J&J’s lead and commit to removing carcinogens and other harmful chemicals from cosmetics and specify a timeline for removal. Johnson & Johnson, one of the largest companies in the world, told those with the Campaign that it will reformulate its hundreds of cosmetics and personal care products in all the markets it serves in 57 countries around the world.
J&J has confirmed to the Campaign that it has set an internal target date of reformulating adult products by the end of 2015, and it will use safe alternatives when reformulating. According to the campaign, Johnson & Johnson will:
• reduce 1,4 dioxane to a maximum of ten parts per million in adult products,
• phase out formaldehyde-releasers in adult products,
• limit parabens in adult products to methyl-, ethyl- and propyl-;
• complete phase-out of triclosan from all products,
• phase out Diethyl Phthalate (DEP) from all products (no other phthalates are currently used), and
• phase out polycyclic musks, animal derived ingredients, tagates, rose crystal and diacetyl from fragrances.
“While J&J still has work to do, we support its efforts and will keep working with the company to make improvements,” said Erin Switalski, executive director at Women’s Voices for the Earth, a co-founder of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. She said:
In addition to being a real win for public health, we believe that these commitments will bode well for J&J’s bottom line, too. Consumers are simply looking for the safest products out there.
The Safe Cosmetics Act of 2011, currently circulating in Congress, will phase out chemicals linked to cancer and reproductive harm; implement a strong safety standard designed to protect children, pregnant women and workers; require full disclosure of ingredients; and give FDA the authority to recall dangerous products. Nneka Leiba, senior analyst with Environmental Working Group, a co-founder of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, observed:
The action by Johnson and Johnson is another example of a company responding to their customers and the public interest community. Unfortunately, not every company will take similar steps to protect consumers from potentially toxic ingredients. That is why we need Congress and the cosmetics industry to support the Safe Cosmetics Act that will require substances be safe for human health before being used in the products we all use every day.
It’s good to see a company – even though it took a very long time and lots of outside pressure – do the right thing. The lesson to be learned from this story is that if we get involved – stay involved – and don’t give up – good things will eventually happen.
Source: Corporate Crime Reporter
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