Last month, J&J announced it had set an internal target date that by the end of 2015 it will have reduced or eliminated formaldehyde releasers, certain parabens, 1,4-dioxane, triclosan, diethyl phthalate (DEP) and five fragrance chemicals from all of its products.
Meet or beat…
This campaign is homing in on Avon, Estée Lauder, L’Oréal, Procter & Gamble, and Unilever, and according to its co-founder Lisa Archer; "is a major victory for public health. We are calling on these cosmetics giants to meet or beat J&J’s commitments and signal they take consumer safety as seriously as their competitor.”
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics says that whilst challenging these cosmetic companies it will still remain vigilant “in making sure that J&J meets its commitments and will continue to encourage it to remove other ingredients of concern.”
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.
Cleaning up baby care
In November last year, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics issued a public complaint putting pressure on the baby care giant having found that it had removed two potentially hazardous chemicals, 1,4-dioxane and quaternium-15, from products in many countries in Europe, Asia and Africa, but in the US, China and Canada, traces were still present.
In a letter responding to the NGO at the time, J&J CEO Bill Weldon stated that the company planned to eliminate formaldehyde-releasing preservatives, such as quaternium-15, from hundreds of its baby products in the next two years.
Weldon also stated that J&J was working with its global suppliers to reduce traces of 1,4-dioxane, considered a likely carcinogen, to <1 to 4ppm, with most now meeting this standard. He claimed the goal of this research is to find an alternative to completely remove these ingredients from formulations in the future.