Procter & Gamble has agreed to pay $8 million to settle a class action lawsuit brought against it over claims that its benzene-based aerosol spray caused cancer. The company said it was pleased to resolve the matter without further litigation but denies all the allegations made in the lawsuit.
Benzene is classified as a Group 2A carcinogen, meaning it causes cancer in humans. According to the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP), inhalation exposures to benzene above 0.1 ppm increase the risk of leukemia.
In addition to being widely used in household items such as deodorants, toothpaste, and detergents, benzene is also found in gasoline and paint thinners. Benzene exposure can cause headaches, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, and other health problems.
The lawsuit claims that Procter & Gamble violated fair advertising rules by failing to explicitly mention the use of benzene in its advertising campaigns and that the business completely ignored consumer health risks related to the use of benzene. Here are the products that are included in this lawsuit:
The lawsuit covers not only aerosol antiperspirant but also deodorant, dry shampoo, air conditioners, and body spray.
As a background check for this class action lawsuit, Procter & Gamble recalled 32 products that may contain benzene in December 2022.
Here is Procter & Gamble’s official statement.
To date, The Procter & Gamble Company has not received any reports of adverse events related to this recall and is conducting this recall out of an abundance of caution,
FYI: HRB Brands’ Brut, Sure, and Coppertone Sunscreen are part of another class action settlement with similar allegations. Both of these products are recalled from marketing, so please stop using them.
Anyone who purchased a Procter & Gamble Old Spice, Waterloo, Herbal Essences, Hair Food, Secret, Deodorant, shampoo, air conditioner body spray, or aerosol antiperspirant product between November 4, 2015, and December 31, 2021 is eligible for this settlement.
Procter & Gamble has agreed to stop selling and distributing the recall products that have been linked to benzene.
In the future, Procter & Gamble will improve its manufacturing processes to avoid disasters like this one, and it will test the quality of its products at least once a year.
Class members with receipts of purchase can claim up to $3.50 off each product, up to a maximum of $10.50 or three vouchers per family. Without receipt of purchase, a class member can claim $3.50 per family.
Class members who purchased additional P&G aerosol products between November 4, 2015, and December 31, 2021, but did not receive a voucher under the recall programs, are eligible to receive $10.50 for this class and an extra $3.5 voucher per household.
To receive individual benefits, eligible class members must submit a valid claim before the due date.