The Thalidomide tragedy will always remain a part of our company’s history. We will never forget what happened, and we deeply regret the wide-ranging consequences for the people affected and their families. On this page, you will find information about Thalidomide and how Grünenthal currently provides support to Thalidomide-affected people.

“We deeply regret the severe consequences of the tragedy. We take our responsibility towards those affected very seriously and provide concrete support in their everyday lives.”

Gabriel Baertschi

CEO Grünenthal

Gabriel Baertschi Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Grünenthal Group

Gabriel Baertschi, CEO Grünenthal

Information on the Thalidomide tragedy

A package of the drug thalidomide Forte.

The history of the Thalidomide tragedy

The Thalidomide tragedy has had a fundamental impact on the lives of the people affected and their families. In this chapter we explore the historical events that shaped the tragedy, including the criminal trial and the creation of the Contergan Foundation.
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News and current developments


50 years ago today, the Aachen Regional Court terminated the Thalidomide proceedings against nine Grünenthal senior employees. The criminal trial is still considered one of the most complex and costly proceedings in German legal history. The legal and medical questions concerning the Thalidomide tragedy were complex and difficult to answer.


Contact information for journalists and Thalidomide-affected people

Fabia Kehren

Fabia Kehren

Contact for the public

Global Communications Grünenthal GmbH

Phone +49 (0) 241 569 3269


Tom Hermes

Contact for people affected by Thalidomide

The Grünenthal Foundation for the Support of Thalidomide-Affected People

Phone +49 (0) 241 569 2742