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CVS pulls out some J&J baby powder from stores

Credit: REUTERS/LUCAS JACKSON

Pharmacy retailer CVS Health Corp said on Thursday it is pulling out 22 ounce bottles of Johnson & Johnson's baby powder from its stores and online as a precautionary measure.

Adds details from CVS statement, share movement

Oct 24 (Reuters) - Pharmacy retailer CVS Health Corp CVS.N said on Thursday it is pulling out 22 ounce bottles of Johnson & Johnson's JNJ.N baby powder from its stores and online as a precautionary measure.

"We also initiated a 'Do Not Sell' register prompt in our stores to prevent the sale of this item during the product removal process," CVS said.

J&J, which is facing thousands of lawsuits over a variety of products, said last week it was recalling around 33,000 bottles of baby powder in the United States after U.S. health regulators found trace amounts of asbestos in samples taken from a bottle purchased online.

The move marked the first time J&J recalled its iconic baby powder for possible asbestos contamination, and the first time U.S. regulators have announced a finding of asbestos in the product.

Asbestos is a known carcinogen that has been linked to deadly mesothelioma.

"It's temporary – in response to the recall we announced last week and it's limited to the 22 oz bottles," J&J spokesman Ernie Knewitz said.

"They are doing it storewide because they don't have the resources to go through at the store level and check all the SKUs, check all the lot numbers ... The other baby powder sizes will remain on the shelves."

CVS did not have an immediate response on JNJ's comment. The company confirmed that the recall was for all the 22 oz, product, not just the single lot, and that other J&J talc products remain in its stores.

J&J's shares fell nearly 2% following the news.

(Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)

((Nivedita.Balu@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780; outside U.S. +91 80 6749 4822/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/niveditabalu;))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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