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J&J To Pay $72 million in Baby Powder Case

Missouri Circuit Court jury decision announced late yesterday.

Johnson & Johnson has been ordered by a jury to pay $72 million to the estate of the woman whose death from ovarian cancer was linked to her use the company’s baby powder and Shower to Shower product.
 
The circuit court of St. Louis awarded the family of $10 million in actual damages and $62 million of punitive damages, according to reports about the case (Fox v. Johnson & Johnson, Cause No. 1422-CC09012-01, Division 10, Missouri Circuit Court, 22nd Judicial District).
 
The verdict is the first by a US jury to award damages over the claims, according to lawyers who represented the woman.
 
A statement provided by Carol Goodrich, a Johnson & Johnson spokeswoman, noted: “We have no higher responsibility than the health and safety of consumers, and we are disappointed with the outcome of the trial. We sympathize with the plaintiff's family but firmly believe the safety of cosmetic talc is supported by decades of scientific evidence.”
 
There are additional trials in other talc lawsuits scheduled this year.
 
Baby powder sales in US multi-outlets rose 6.21% to $105 million for the 52 weeks ended Dec. 27, 2015, according to Information Resources. Johnson & Johnson’s leads the category, followed by private label products.
 
Valeant Pharmaceuticals currently owns Shower to Shower but was not a defendant in the Missouri case. Valeant acquired the brand in 2012.

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