New Proposition 65 Labeling Requirements Now in Effect

New Proposition 65 Labeling Requirements Now in Effect

Changes to the California Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act (better known as Proposition 65) officially came into effect today.

Products now being manufactured are in scope of the new requirements. However, products manufactured prior to August 30 do not need the new warning label, provided they met the requirements in effect when they were manufactured.

The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) introduced the new requirements to make warnings more meaningful and useful for the public, and to reduce over-warning. The primary requirements include new warning label language and symbols for both long and short-form labels, and tailored warnings for specific products, industries and areas.

Learn more about the updates to Proposition 65 short and long-form labels in the Guide to Understanding Proposition 65 Labeling Requirements.

Proposition 65 non-compliance can result in steep fines. Lawsuits are often filed as a result of bounty hunters — private citizens who hire lawyers to pursue settlements from businesses over non-compliant products. In 2017, there were approximately 700 Proposition 65 violations, which resulted in $26 million in settlements, $20 million of which went to lawyer fees.

Bounty hunters may capitalize on the new labeling requirements and seek out products that do not comply with the updated regulation. This includes products sold to California residents online or through catalogs.

Not all companies are fully prepared for the deadline, and they should consider implementing risk-mitigation strategies to avoid litigation and costly fines. Such strategies may include focusing on warning for substances that have been frequently litigated in past years. They may also choose to cease selling at-risk products into the California market. However, this leaves companies open to future litigation if their products are unknowingly sold or distributed in California by a distributor or reseller.

Companies that are not compliant with today’s deadline are now at risk of fines and litigation. Assent’s Proposition 65 solution allows companies to gather and centralize their supply chain data, and easily determine the presence of Proposition 65-regulated substances in their products.

For more information on how Assent can help your company manage its requirements under the new regulatory changes, contact