Two developments under California’s Proposition 65 carry the potential to have a large impact on businesses selling products in California.  First, DINP has been added to the Proposition 65 List of Restricted Chemicals.  Second, California officials are considering revisions to the Proposition 65 Warning Regulations.

Diisononyl phthalate (DINP) was added to California’s Proposition 65 restricted chemical list on December 20, 2013.  DINP is a common platicizer used in a variety of soft vinyl and plastic products.  Many businesses switched to using DINP as a replacement for chemical phthalates previously restricted by Proposition 65.  By December 20, 2014, it will unlawful to expose California consumers to DINP without first providing a warning.  Business who decline to reformulate or provide warnings for DINP-containing products after December 20, 2014 can expect to receive notices of violation from private Proposition 65 enforcers by early 2015.

In April, California’s Office of Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) published notice that it was considering changing the current Proposition 65 warnings requirements.  Among the changes being considered:

  • Instituting mandatory warning language rather than simply requiring that a given warning be “reasonable”.
  • Requiring that the following chemicals be specifically listed by name: Acrylamide, Arsenic, Benzene, Cadmium, Chlorinated Tris, 1,4-Dioxane, Formaldehyde, Lead, Mercury, Phthalates, Tobacco smoke, and Toluene.
  • Requiring use of the international health hazard symbol on all warnings:
  • Requiring warnings to be provided in languages predominantly used in area.
  • Requiring businesses to post detailed information regarding the risk of product and chemical exposure to a website hosted by OEHHA.

This is a pre-regulatory notice and the formal regulatory period is not expected to begin until late summer 2014.  If OEHHA decides to formally propose changes, opportunities for public input will be provided during the formal regulatory process.  Additional information may be found at:  www.P65Warnings.ca.gov.