Proposition 65 Exemption for Food


Under Proposition 65 (the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986), there is an exemption for naturally-occurring heavy metals in consumable products. Does this mean all food is automatically out of scope? 


Food is not automatically outside the scope of Proposition 65. For instance, edible or consumable products that produce acrylamide when cooked or baked, such as french fries, or products that absorb lead from tools during processing, such as cocoa and chocolate, often may face enforcement under Proposition 65. 

The exemption is for naturally occurring chemicals found in consumable goods under certain circumstances. If chemicals are introduced during processing, they would not be considered naturally occurring. Additionally, businesses selling fruits and vegetables with trace amounts of these chemicals and substances in California must demonstrate listed chemicals are naturally occurring and at the “lowest level currently feasible.”

See also: Naturally Occurring Lead in Produce under Proposition 65


Article content is current as of 2019-12-20.

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