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Johnson & Johnson Says Government Is Wrong About Asbestos in Its Baby Powder

The FDA said in October it found the presence of sub-trace levels of asbestos contamination in the company's baby powder product.
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About six weeks after the Food and Drug Administration said it found trace amounts of asbestos in Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder product, the company said its own tests show the FDA’s findings were inaccurate.

The company said it reaffirmed that its Johnson’s Baby Powder is safe after testing conducted by two third-party labs showed that asbestos wasn't present in the lone bottle that the FDA’s chosen lab tested.

Additionally, the company said there was no asbestos present in the retained samples of the finished lot from which the bottle was produced.

"Our talc is safe and asbestos free, and these 150-plus tests, and the tests we routinely do to ensure the quality and safety of our talc-based products, are consistent with the results from renowned independent research labs over the past 40 years,” the company said in a statement.

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The company said that a total of 155 tests were conducted using four different testing methods on samples from the same bottle that the FDA tested.

In October, the company announced a voluntary recall in a single lot of the baby powder in the U.S. following the FDA’s findings. And despite the findings of the new round of testing, the previously announced recall will remain in effect.

“The recall was made out of an abundance of caution and before an investigation could be conducted, and, once initiated, it is not feasible to halt the recall,” the company said.

Johnson & Johnson shares were rising 1.55% to $139.29 on Wednesday.