Best Buy & Walmart Among Retailers Targeted by Proposition 65 Litigation

Best Buy & Walmart Among Retailers Targeted by Proposition 65 Litigation

Valerie Kuntz Discusses Proposition 65 Cases Directed at Retailers & Distributors.

Best Buy Co. Inc. is the latest retailer to be targeted in violation of the California Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (Proposition 65). The motion against them was filed by the Consumer Advocacy Group (CAG) on June 4, 2020, and alleges the company failed to meet the communication requirements related to bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) in plastic GoPro camera mounts.

As with the European Union (EU) region, phthalate substance groupings are being looked at heavily by enforcement authorities, and many Proposition 65 cases are focused on DEHP, which is a phthalate substance known to cause cancer, birth defects, and other reproductive harm. Litigators in the state of California frequently target the substance.


Learn best practices for handling Proposition 65 programs — register now for our upcoming webinar with Bruce Jarnot, Assent’s Senior Manager of Product Compliance, and attorney Daniel Herling, Member/Co-Chair of Product Liability Practice at Mintz.


In January, the CAG had closed a DEHP case against Koco Trading Co. Inc. for $150,000 USD in immediate financial damage. The company had been shipping a set of kitchen tongs that contained DEHP above a safe threshold.

Several more retailers have seen DEHP cases close this year, including:

  • The Home Depot Inc. ($60,000 USD).
  • Steven Madden Ltd. ($26,000 USD).
  • Amazon.com Inc. ($17,500 USD).
  • Walmart Inc. ($55,000 USD).

Many other retailers have received penalties for other phthalate substances, or are navigating the justice system for past offences.


Find out how product compliance enforcement can impact your company in our whitepaper, Enforcement Action: A Piece of the Business Case for Transparency.


You might be surprised how many newer products are listed on the Proposition 65 litigation website. It means that many modern companies and industries are struggling to perform due diligence effectively. Assent’s Proposition 65 solution can quickly campaign your entire supply chain for the existence of any substances for which your company may need to provide warning labels. We’ll also keep your program up to date when the requirements expand.

For more information about how Assent can help your company comply with Proposition 65 requirements, contact our experts at info@assentcompliance.com.

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