An update on proposed consumer product labeling requirements in New York
In June of 2019, we published a blog regarding New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposed Consumer Right to Know Act, which would require the evaluation and potential development of on-package labeling for personal care products containing potentially hazardous chemicals. In a press release, Gov. Cuomo indicated New York would create a list of more than "1,000 carcinogens," which would require labeling. The proposed legislation appears to mimic that of California's Proposition 65 (Prop 65), which requires manufacturers to include warning labels on products that contain specified levels of chemicals that are "known to the state" to cause cancer or reproductive harm. It also builds upon the previously established New York Household Cleansing Product Information Disclosure Program (HCPDIP), which requires manufacturers to list chemical ingredients of concern on their website.
However, on August 27, the New York Supreme Court struck down the HCPDIP law on the basis that the Department of Environmental Conservation did not follow proper procedures under the State Administrative Procedures Act. The court stated that though the department issued it as a "guidance" it was in fact a binding rule, and did not follow the proper procedures in creating a formal law. The HCPDIP was declared "null and void" and cleaning manufacturers will no longer have to comply by January 2020.
The Consumer Right to Know Act has not yet formalized into legislation, and one report indicated that New York state legislators have denied 2020 funding to expand state-required labeling to personal care products. Based on the ruling of the HCPDIP and the lack of 2020 funding, it appears as though the Consumer Right to Know Act will not be written into law in the near future.
Cardno ChemRisk has completed numerous Prop 65 risk assessments for various manufacturers, including for personal care and cleaning products, and is well-versed in consumer product legislation and other regulatory exposure and risk assessments. For more information, please contact Jennifer Bare.