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Published: Friday, January 29, 2016
The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) filed comments this week to a revised proposal issued in November 2015 by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) to amend regulations that govern warnings required under the state's Proposition 65.
OEHHA's November 2015 proposal is the latest version of a proposal first issued in March 2014 that would make numerous changes to the state's regulations for providing "clear and reasonable warnings" related to exposures to substances "known to the State of California" to cause cancer or reproductive harm. According to OEHHA, its proposal would further the "right-to-know" purposes of the statute and provide more specific guidance on the content of safe harbor warnings for a variety of exposure situations, and corresponding methods for providing those warnings. The proposal would also add a specific section to the regulations addressing the relative responsibilities for providing warnings for businesses in the chain of commerce versus retail sellers of a given product.
AHPA's comments to this most recent proposal by OEHHA reiterate many concerns and recommendations expressed in similar comments submitted to OEHHA in April 2015 in response to an earlier proposal to amend this same rule issued by OEHHA in January 2015 proposal. Although OEHHA now claims its November proposal "takes into account all comments received on the earlier proposal," almost none of the recommendations previously submitted by AHPA and others seeking reasonable regulation were accepted in the agency's current draft.
AHPA also joined more than 200 companies and organizations in signing comments submitted by the California Chamber of Commerce to express concern about the latest version of the proposal and provide recommendations to improve the proposal and Prop 65 warnings.