50 For 50: All Talc-Containing Cosmetic Samples Found Asbestos-Free In Latest US FDA Tests
No traces of asbestos were found in each of 50 talc-based cosmetic products a contract lab tested for FDA, an improvement over 17% of samples – nine of 52 products – testing positive for the carcinogen in the agency’s previous round.
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After freezing its routine inspection activities at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the FDA adapted its oversight approach visibly in the drug and medical devices sectors, including with voluntary remote regulatory assessments. The agency now seeks authority to continue that work on a non-voluntary basis across all FDA-regulated programs.
Formed by the FDA in fall 2018 and convened in early 2020 for a public meeting, the Interagency Working Group on Asbestos in Consumer Products maintains that electron microscopy should be a first-line method for detecting asbestos in cosmetic talc and talc-containing products, and that labs should report elongate mineral particles beyond those classically understood as asbestos.
Office of Cosmetics and Colors Linda Katz emphasizes FDA sees allergen labeling as a public health issue. While many allergic reactions are minor, “consumers who are extremely or exclusively sensitive to a particular ingredient should have a right to know.”