The manufacturer that makes Purell hand sanitizer is dealing with a new legal battle.
Per USA Today, Purell’s parent company, GOJO Industries, is facing a class-action lawsuit for "false and misleading" about the product's effectiveness. Purell is known for claiming that the product can kill "99.99 percent of illness causing germs." This would make a single squirt more effective than its competitors. Yet, the FDA went on record stating that it has not been able to prove if these statistics are true.
"FDA is currently not aware of any adequate and well-controlled studies demonstrating that killing or decreasing the number of bacteria or viruses on the skin by a certain magnitude produces a corresponding clinical reduction in infection or disease caused by such bacteria or virus," the FDA wrote in a letter in January. The FDA also advises people not to use hand sanitizers as a replacement for washing their hands with soap.
These inflated claims resulted in a lawsuit being filed against the company in the Northern District of Ohio on March 13. The suit represents four people in California, Michigan, Massachusetts, and Oregon. Additionally, it comes at a time when the company is experiencing product shortages due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The president and CEO of GOJO Industries, Carey Jaros, released a statement explaining that "these lawsuits are without merit." But, he couldn't go into further detail due to pending legal actions.
"We stand 100 percent behind our products," Jaros told the media.
At this point, it's unclear how much in damages could be awarded to the people if GOJO Industries loses the lawsuit.