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Case Study Dow Corning With an ever-increasing demand for products and services with Americas booming economy consumers are exposed every day to new innovative and sometimes dangerous products With these improvements in technology and sophistication there are many products that are not and cannot be understood by the consumer There is very much interest now in the ethics of consumer production and marketing in order to protect the consumer from these sometimes dangerous or misleading products One of the major consumer product problems from the late seventys through the ninetys was with silicon gel breast implants Beginning in 1963 Dow Corning a branch of the Dow Chemical Company produced silicon breast implants Velasquez 356 Spanning through major litigation into the late 1990s there have been many questions into the quality safety and ethical practices concerning the production and presentation of these products The Dow Corning case as found in Manuel Velasquezs Business Ethics Concepts and Cases 355-359 provides an excellent example that gets to the base of problems dealing with ethics of consumer production and marketing After a brief summary of the Dow Case I will discuss how the case applies to The Contract View of Businesss Duties to Consumers as presented in Chapter Six of Velasquezs Business Ethics Did Dow agree to a contract with each consumer which would provide a faulty free and safe product but breach this contract by producing and selling a product that did not meet these measures Was there misleading information provided or information withheld These questions will be touched as they are directly involved with this case and the Contract View As early as 1963 Dow and several other companies had begun to produce and sell plastic bags filled with silicon gel with the purpose of being breast implants At that point in 1963 the company believed that the silicon substance was safe for use in humans after being tested in short term two-year animal
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