An FDA-sponsored Talc Asbestos Meeting Produced Few Results
A recent FDA-sponsored talc asbestos symposium was indicative of their bias towards big business and away from cosmetic product safety
Wednesday, February 10, 2021 - An explosive investigative report conducted by Reuters concluded that the cosmetics division of the FDA has been taking their marching orders from big companies in the cosmetics industry like Johnson & Johnson, and have failed to adequately test and regulate talc. In a piece titled, "FDA bowed to industry for decades as alarms were sounded over talc," investigators have found that for at least the last 50 years, FDA regulators have downplayed talc asbestos health concerns and time and time again deferred the responsibility for product safety to cosmetic manufacturers. The reporter claims that a recent invitation-only symposium to analyze whether or not talc is contaminated with asbestos was seeded with invitees that had either worked for Johnson & Johnson in the past and those who had testified on behalf of Johnson & Johnson's defense of ovarian cancer and mesothelioma claims. "The Asbestos in Talc Symposium, sponsored by the Food and Drug Administration, was dominated by industry hands: Most of the 21 non-government participants had done work for talc companies, such as testing and serving as expert witnesses and consultants, symposium documents, and other records show." Plaintiff scientific expert witnesses that requested to be at the meeting were refused. National attorneys offer a free consultation to people in the United States affected by prolonged Johnson and Johnson's asbestos contaminated talc and before filing a talcum powder cancer lawsuit claim.
The FDA has relied on the talc industry's product safety assurance for many decades. Multi-billion dollar jury awards, however, have caught the agency's attention and has forced the agency to take some action. When the FDA approved laboratory tested talc for asbestos, they found it in 11 samples. Johnson's Baby Powder purchased from retailers Walmart, CVS, and Rite Aid contained asbestos, a known carcinogen. Johnson & Johnson recalled a batch of 33,000 bottles of talcum powder as a result.
There is also a congressional investigation underway regarding the government's role in regulating talc. Congress thinks that the government should do more since carcinogens have been discovered and people are dying. Over 25,000 ovarian cancer and mesothelioma plaintiffs have filed suit against Johnson & Johnson. The company settled 1000 claims for $100 million and experts think much more in the way of settlements could be forthcoming in 2021. Women with ovarian cancer claim using Johnson's Baby Powder caused their ovarian cancer or mesothelioma. If you or a loved one have used Johnson's Baby Powder you may speak with a Johnson's Baby Powder Cancer lawyer to see if you can file a claim.
Since the early 1970's asbestos health scare, companies in the cosmetics industry were self-regulating and represented by the Cosmetic Toiletry and Fragrance Association, an influential group of individuals from multi-billion dollar cosmetics companies. The CTFA convinced the FDA that their lax asbestos testing methods were sufficient, and the FDA capitulated. To this day, the CTFA urges cosmetics manufacturers to do their talc purity testing, but most companies do not. Recent courtroom testimony revealed that an executive representing Clubman talc said his company had never tested their talc for asbestos. Instead, they relied on the outdated talc purity guarantee provided by talc miners like Imerys.