Johnson & Johnson voluntarily recalls sunscreens on benzene concerns

The company said all lots of Neutrogena and Aveeno brand aerosol sunscreen products were being called back as a cautionary measure after internal testing identified low levels of benzene in some samples, news agency Reuters reported.
The Johnson & Johnson logo appears above a trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP)
The Johnson & Johnson logo appears above a trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP)
Published on Jul 15, 2021 01:55 PM IST
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Byhindustantimes.com | Written by Sohini Goswami

Johnson & Johnson said on Wednesday it is voluntarily recalling some of its sunscreen products from the market after a cancer-causing chemical was found in some of the samples.

The company said all lots of Neutrogena and Aveeno brand aerosol sunscreen products were being called back as a cautionary measure after internal testing identified low levels of benzene in some samples, news agency Reuters reported.

Benzene is classified as a human carcinogen, a substance that could potentially cause cancer depending on the level and extent of exposure.

"While benzene is not an ingredient in any of our sunscreen products, it was detected in some samples of the impacted aerosol sunscreen finished products," the company said.

"Daily exposure to benzene in these aerosol sunscreen products at the levels detected in our testing would not be expected to cause adverse health consequences."

The recalled aerosol sunscreens are Neutrogena Beach Defense, Neutrogena Cool Dry Sport, Neutrogena Invisible Daily defense, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer, and Aveeno Protect Refresh. The products come in many different sizes and sun protection factors -- the list posted on Neutrogena’s website is 23 pages long.

J&J said consumers should stop using the affected products and appropriately discard them.

Consumers should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have any concerns, questions or have experienced any problems related to using these products.

According to a Bloomberg report, Valisure, an independent testing lab in New Haven, Connecticut, found in May some widely used sunscreens and after-sun products contained up to six parts per million of benzene. The company filed a petition with the Food and Drug Administration asking for the products to be recalled. Neutrogena topped the list of sunscreens with the highest levels of benzene.

“When the industry was alerted to this matter, we immediately began a comprehensive end-to-end investigation of our manufacturing process and raw materials, including internal testing and a thorough data review,” said Jake Sargent, a spokesman for J&J.

Valisure also detected benzene in CVS Health Corp. sunscreens as well as after-sun care products, among many other sunscreen brands, though it did find sunscreens that didn’t contain benzene.

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Monday, December 06, 2021