Last winter, many customers were shocked to learn that Johnson & Johnson’s baby shampoo contains a chemical compound which releases formaldehyde – a chemical which was officially added to the US Dept. of Health and Human Services’ list of known carcinogens in 2011.
According to a report by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, Johnson & Johnson only uses this compound in its baby shampoos in certain countries — including the U.S., Canada, China and Australia. Baby shampoos sold in other countries — including Denmark, Sweden, South Africa and Japan — did not contain the same compound.
Since the release of the report, the brand has agreed to phase out formaldehyde-producing ingredients from its U.S. baby care products within two years.
We find it disturbing, however, that even after the U.S. recognized the cancer-causing potential of formaldehyde in 2011, the brand continued manufacturing baby shampoos with this ingredient … despite the fact that they knew another formulation was possible.
What do you think about companies that sell safer versions of their products in some countries, but not in others? Do you think the responsibility belongs to national governments? To companies? To customers like you? Please share your thoughts in the comments box below.