McNeil Consumer Healthcare

McNeil Consumer Healthcare
McNeil-PPC, Inc.
Industry Pharmaceuticals,
Founded 1879
Headquarters Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, United States
Products Tylenol, Motrin, Imodium, Lactaid, Listerine, Plax, Visine, Benadryl, Caladryl, Zyrtec, Mylanta, Mylicon, Pepcid, Splenda, Benecol (US license)
Parent Johnson & Johnson

McNeil Consumer Healthcare is an American, long established, medicals products company belonging to the Johnson & Johnson healthcare products group.


The company was founded on March 16, 1879 by 23-year-old Robert McNeil, who paid $167 for a drugstore complete with fixtures, inventory and soda fountain, as a retail pharmacy, in the Kensington section of Philadelphia, PA, United States. Robert McNeil was a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science (University of the Sciences in Philadelphia).

In 1904, one of McNeil's sons, Robert Lincoln McNeil, became part of the company and together they created McNeil Laboratories in 1933. The company would focus on direct marketing of prescription drugs to hospitals, pharmacists, and doctors. Development of acetaminophen began under the leadership of Robert L. McNeil, Jr., who later served as the firm's chairman.[1] In 1953 McNeil Laboratories introduced Algoson, a preparation containing acetaminophen together with sodium butabarbital, a sedative. In 1955, McNeil Laboratories introduced Tylenol Elixir for children, containing only acetaminophen.

In 1959, Johnson & Johnson acquired McNeil Laboratories and a year later the company was able to sell Tylenol for the first time ever, without a prescription. In 1961 the company moved into its Fort Washington, Pennsylvania headquarters. Along with its Fort Washington plant, McNeil also has plants worldwide.

In 1977, two companies were created: McNeil medicals products and McNeil Consumer Products Company or McNeil Consumer Healthcare. The focus of McNeil medicals products is to market prescription drugs. In 1993 McNeil medicals products merged with the Ortho Pharmaceutical to form Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical.

In 2001 McNeil Consumer Healthcare changed its name to McNeil Consumer & Specialty medicals products. However, it was changed again and is now known as "McNeil Consumer Healthcare".

As part of Procter & Gamble's acquisition of Gillette in 2005, Procter & Gamble's Gillette was required by the Federal Trade Commission to divest itself of Rembrandt toothpaste.[2] Consequently, it sold Rembrandt to Johnson & Johnson's McNeil-PPC division.[2] [3][4][5] That year, Rembrandt had sales that likely exceeded $100 million.[2]

The company markets over-the-counter and prescription medicals products including complete lines of Tylenol and Motrin IB (ibuprofen) products for adults and children. The company is located in Fort Washington, PA, and currently employs 2,600 people. Annual sales in 2004 were US $2.1 billion. McNeil's Canadian head office is in Markham, Ontario.

The current president of McNeil Consumer Healthcare is Denice Torres.

McNeil Nutritionals

McNeil Nutritionals, LLC markets and sells a range of products including Lactaid, the branded sucralose sweetener Splenda, and Benecol in the UK, Ireland, Belgium, and in the US under license from Raisio Group.

In June 2007, McNeil became involved in lawsuits with Merisant (makers of the artificial sweetener Equal).[6] More recently, it has started producing a sweetener made with stevia and cane sugar, marketed as Sun Crystals.

In 2012 it started to sell a monk fruit-based sweetener called Nectresse.[7]

Johnson & Johnson Merck Joint Venture

Known as the "JV," this 50/50 joint venture between Johnson & Johnson and Merck handled the OTC product lines Pepcid, Mylanta, and Mylicon and is located at the McNeil Consumer Healthcare headquarters in Fort Washington, PA.

In September 2011, however, the JV ended, when Merck sold its 50 percent interest in the joint venture. Merck said it sold its interest in the joint venture so it could focus on building the consumer products division it gained through its acquisition of Schering-Plough in 2009. By terminating the joint venture, Merck said it will have greater freedom to exploit opportunities to switch prescription medicines to over-the-counter products that can be purchased without a doctor’s prescription. As a result, all former Johnson & Johnson-Merck products are now handled by McNeil Consumer Healthcare.

1982 Chicago Tylenol murders

In 1982 seven people were murdered in Chicago by Tylenol manufactured by McNeil Consumer Healthcare that had been tampered with after manufacture and placed on the store shelves.

2010 Product Recall

In April 2010 McNeil Consumer Healthcare recalled 43 over-the-counter children's medicines. Tylenol, Motrin, Zyrtec and Benadryl products were affected.[8]


  1. Singer, Natasha (June 3, 2010). "Robert L. McNeil Jr., Chemist Who Introduced Tylenol, Dies at 94". The New York Times. Retrieved June 4, 2010.
  2. 1 2 3 Jack Neff (October 24, 2005). "Johnson & Johnson To Buy Rembrandt Oral Care Line". Advertising Age. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
  3. Julie Deardorff (March 5, 2014). "Loss of canker sore toothpaste angers loyal users". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
  4. Byron, Ellen (April 24, 2007). "Merger Challenge: Unite Toothbrush, Toothpaste". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
  5. Michael Hitt; R. Duane Ireland; Robert Hoskisson (2008). Strategic Management: Competitiveness and Globalization, Concepts. Cengage Learning. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
  6. NY Times Article June 2007
  7. Christopher Adams (Aug 28, 2012), US launch sweet news for kiwi supplier, The New Zealand Herald
  8. Singer, Natasha (May 1, 2010). "Children's Tylenol and Other Drugs Recalled". The New York Times. Retrieved May 3, 2010.
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