(Bloomberg) -- The Johnson & Johnson-made children’s cough syrup found to contain unsafe levels of a toxic industrial solvent was sold in six African countries, the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority said on Saturday.

In addition to South Africa, where it was manufactured, tainted Benylin Paediatric Syrup was sold in Eswatini, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania and Nigeria, SAHPRA said in a statement. Regulators have determined that two batches of syrup were contaminated, both of which are being recalled, the statement said. Earlier, Nigerian authorities had flagged unsafe levels of diethylene glycol in just one batch, made in May 2021.

Last year, J&J spun off its consumer health division, including the Cape Town factory that produces Benylin, to a separate company known as Kenvue Inc. J&J referred inquiries about Benylin to Kenvue. 

“We take this matter very seriously and are acting with urgency to conduct a thorough safety and quality assessment,” Kenvue, based in Skillman, New Jersey, said in a statement. 

No reports of illness or death have been made public.

This is the ninth known example of industrial solvents turning up in children’s syrup medication in recent years. Four of the poisonings have been deadly, killing about 350 children in Indonesia, Uzbekistan, Gambia and Cameroon.

Syrup products can be tainted when propylene glycol, a harmless compound used to dissolve active ingredients, is replaced or mixed with either of two cheaper, toxic solvents, diethylene glycol or ethylene glycol. During the Covid pandemic, propylene glycol became scarce and expensive due to supply-chain disruptions.

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