SAFEGUARDS | Hardgoods NO. 115/17

SafeGuardS Insulating tapes

A number of Prop 65 settlements involving DEHP have been reached for a wide variety of products. The parties in these settlements agreed to reformulate DEHP to less than or equal to 0.1%. Some of the settlements also allow the use of a Prop 65 warning.

California Proposition 65 (Prop 65 [1]) is the ‘Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986’, a ballot initiative passed overwhelmingly by California residents in November 1986. It requires the state to publish a list of chemicals [2] that are known to cause cancer, birth defects or reproductive harm. The list was first published in 1987 and is updated at least once a year.

Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP, CAS 117-81-7) has been classified as a chemical known to cause cancer since January 1988 [3]. It has also been classified as causing reproductive toxicity since October 2003. 

Companies doing business in California have been required to provide ‘a clear and reasonable warning’ before knowingly and intentionally exposing anyone to DEHP since January 1989. Businesses with less than 10 employees and government agencies are exempt from this provision. Businesses are also exempt from this provision if the exposures create no significant risk of cancer or other reproductive harm.

From August 30, 2018, businesses are required to comply with new and revised language for a clear and reasonable warning [4] for the purpose of Prop 65.

Prop 65 has been effective in reducing exposures to toxic chemicals. Since its enactment, there have been numerous lawsuits which resulted in the reduction of carcinogenic and reproductive chemicals by requiring reformulations of consumer products containing such chemicals. Of the 800 or so listed chemicals, consumer products containing flame retardants, lead and phthalates have been consistently targeted over the years.

Since Q4 of 2016, there have been a number of Prop 65 settlements requiring the reformulation of DEHP and/or providing a Prop 65 warning label in a wide variety of products.

Highlights of these settlement agreements are summarized in Table 1. A Prop 65 settlement is a consent agreement between the parties named in the settlement and a party not named in a settlement is not bound by that settlement.

Item Scope Reformulation for DEHP/Warning
1 Car mounts ≤ 1000 ppm otherwise warning
2 Electrical tapes ≤ 0.1%
3 Key safes ≤ 0.1%
4 LED butterflies with plastic suction cups ≤ 0.1%
5 Massage rollers ≤ 0.1%
6 Mirrors with plastic suction cups ≤ 1000 ppm otherwise warning
7 Paper towel holders ≤ 0.1%
8 Pencil bags ≤ 1000 ppm
9 PVC/Vinyl lace edgings ≤ 0.1%
10 Throttle controls ≤ 1000 ppm otherwise warning
11 USB personal fans ≤ 1000 ppm otherwise warning
12 Vinyl/PVC hose, tubing and/or spray heads, and faucet connecters ≤ 0.1% otherwise warning
13 Vinyl/PVC zipper pull component of ear bud cases ≤ 1000 ppm otherwise warning

Throughout a global network of laboratories, SGS can offer comprehensive testing, product assessments and consultancy services related to California Proposition 65 to assist your risk management in your supply chain for consumer goods such as DIYs, electrical and electronics, hardgoods products, juvenile products, and textile & toy products. For further information, please visit our website.

For enquiries, please contact:

Hingwo Tsang
Global Information and Innovation Manager
t: +852 2774 7420

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