December 12, 2022 USTFA

What California’s Proposition 65 Can Mean for US Aquaculture

Courtesy of NAA:

Proposition 65 requires the State of California to maintain and update a list of chemicals that can cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm.  Businesses with 10 or more employees that expose individuals to listed chemicals through their products or operations generally must provide warnings.

The California Attorney General’s Office enforces Proposition 65. Any district attorney or city attorney (for cities whose population exceeds 750,000) may also enforce Proposition 65. In addition, any individual acting in the public interest may enforce Proposition 65 by filing a lawsuit against a business alleged to be in violation of this law. Penalties for violating Proposition 65 by failing to provide notices can be as high as $2,500 per violation per day.

Lawsuits have been filed by the Attorney General’s Office, district attorneys, consumer advocacy groups, and private citizens and law firms. Within the last year or so, private California-based attorneys have ordered US farmed seafood on-line and then tested the products against the Prop 65 list.  If there is a potential violation, they then write the supplier indicating they are filing suit for violation. The California Office of the Attorney General website includes a File a 60-Day Notice link to facilitate serving the Attorney General’s copies of 60-Day Notices and the confidential documentation that accompanies a Certificate of Merit.

This website, operated by California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) posts fact sheets and links to other pertinent information on an ongoing basis. To visit the website, click here.

For more information about Proposition 65, including what warnings mean, when businesses are required to warn about exposures, and other questions, visit a Frequently Asked Question page.

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