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California Proposition 65 Update (Safe Drinking Water Toxic Enforcement Act)

Posted August 2, 2018

California made major changes to its existing Proposition 65 (Prop 65) safe drinking water act. These changes may impact manufacturers, distributors and laboratories doing business in the state of California. As Prop 65 currently stands, if a product or a device contains chemical substances identified by Prop 65 as carcinogenic or harmful to reproduction and exceeds the “No significant risk levels” then one of several action items is required by California state law. Requests for delay of implementation have been denied.

  • A warning label will need to be placed on the product (and advertisements/web sites/catalog listings) indicating this product or device contains chemical(s) identified by the state of California as harmful to reproductive activities or may cause birth defects.  
  • A triangular yellow warning symbol will be required (with certain exceptions) on warning labels.
  • Manufacturers, distributors, retailers, laboratories and raw material suppliers may provide documentation as proof that the identified chemical(s) is either not present or has been determined to be at levels below limits set by Prop 65.

August 30, 2018 is the new deadline for warning labels or documentation declaring products are free of these chemicals or fall below the levels set by Prop 65. Fines can be substantial for manufacturers and distributors that fail to adhere to the new labeling requirements.  Products manufactured before August 30th may be sold or distributed under the previous Prop 65 safe harbor regulations during a transition period. Supply chain partners may request product labeling or certain documentation be provided sooner than August 30th.

For detailed information regarding Prop 65, to see a list of the identified chemicals, and for additional contact information, visit the Proposition 65 Warnings Website.