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Feb 272010
 

Here’s a quick update and addition to our conversations surrounding FDA Globalization Act and CO HB 10-1248 Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act.

Friend and Colleague, Tony Burfield, has been fighting the good fight re: aromatic ingredient regulations in the EU. He runs the fab site Cropwatch and is a contributor on aromaconnection. He’s headed to speak at the British Society of Perfumers Safety & Regulatory Issues Symposium at Cambridge on 11th March 2010, …talk entitled "Is excessive regulation destroying the perfumery art?"

I’ve passed on to him what’s happening here re: FDA Glob Act and CO HB1248. He’s hopeful that there might be "some victory for common sense looming" and will be using information about our movement to help staunch EU march to over regulate. He is grateful for what we are doing here and passes on,  "In SE Asia anti-IFRA and anti-REACH groups are forming, since producers of natural products feel that their livelihoods are being put in hexapody by the effects of creeping legislation." This is hopeful news.

P.S. new word for my vocabulary "hexapody". 🙂 Love those Brits.

 Posted by at 3:06 pm
Feb 252010
 

In the aromatherapy products community, safety is by far the most discussed topic. We spend hours in online discussion groups, social media outlets, on our websites and in our blogs in an effort to convey accurate and safe advice to those using essential oils and ancillary products.  Let us be very clear.  We at Samara Botane want safe aromatherapy products that carry no or minimal risk to consumers. 

Several years ago, many of our colleagues in the small personal care products industry joined with us as enthusiastic signers to the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics. Sounded good and what looked to be a way to carry a larger message about personal products safety. We trusted that CFSC would represent an honest, peer-reviewed scientifically verifiable position. A closer review now indicates that many of their references reflect insufficient data, some reflect low hazard and yet they include these substances in a larger list of potentially toxic ingredients. Additionally, we assumed and trusted that, as signers, our interests would be taken into consideration for any actions bearing our signatures as supporters.  When the FDA introduced the FDA Globalization Act of 2008, it appeared as if CFSC was pressing for stringent, and perhaps unnecessary, regulations to be included in the act requiring product registration fees that would be prohibitive for many of the CFSC small business signers. At that time, it also began to become apparent that perhaps an overzealous rush headlong was overstating the immediate necessity for some of the requirements suggested to be included in the act and that perhaps established authorities were not being consulted to provide scientific documentation that would anchor CFSC’s position with actual facts and tempered scientific reasoning. There was an attempt to discuss our concerns with the leaders at CFSC, however, after several months we at Samara Botane requested we be removed as a signer when they were nonresponsive to our inquiries. It took over 2 months for them to comply with our wishes to have our name removed.  We were not alone.  Other small business colleagues did likewise and express similar stories.

Donna Maria Coles Johnson, President/CEO Indie Beauty Network, spearheaded a movement to insure member voices were heard at the FDA and she attempted to also dialog with CFSC.  She and several IBN members travelled to Washington, D.C. on two occasions to meet with the Congressional Committee working on the FDA Globalization Act.  The act has now been shelved, however, it could become active again. Donna Maria was diligent to communicate with and solicit input from IBN members throughout this process, gaining broad support from the membership.  Here are some of  her reports during this part of our story: 
Why I Oppose New Cosmetics Laws That Do Not Contain Exemptions For Small Businesses
Why I’m Headed Back To Capitol Hill On Behalf Of America’s Small Businesses
Campaign For Safe Cosmetics: A New Report

It appears as if CFSC is now determined to press for these cosmetic ingredient requirements without consideration for small business exemption or insuring that other concerns are first addressed. They are now taking their efforts to the states themselves. As an endorsing organization of the CFSC, the Women’s Lobby of Colorado, is supporting state senator Boyd’s and representative Primavera’s HB 1248 The Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act. CFSC is prominently featured on relative Women’s Lobby documents.  Based on Samara Botane’s experience with the nonresponsiveness of CFSC, and their failure to adequately advise signers  we wonder if the 36 small Colorado companies listed here have expressly authorized CFSC or the Women’s Lobby to use their names on this document, which intimates support of the act. We wonder if they are even aware of the act or the broader implications of the CFSC agenda that could impact their small business. Additionally, we do not know where the Women’s Lobby is gathering their facts, but their fact sheet is not entirely accurate.  Washington state has NOT passed a similar law as stated.  House Bill 2166 was introduced in the Washington legislature and referred to committee in 2007 and no further action has been taken.  There is not an existing similar law in Washington state.

We at Samara Botane encourage all small personal care businesses who either reside in or do business in Colorado to contact the legislators to oppose this bill.  Please read these blogposts from colleagues with additional details, concerns and cautions:
Oppose the Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act Donna Maria Coles Johnson, IBN
Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act :: Take Action Immediately, Kayla Fioravanti, Essential Wholesale
Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act Kelly Bloom, Southern Soapers 
Tunnel Vision, Robert Tisserand, Aromatherapy Expert and Author
Colorado Safe Cosmetics Bill, Cindy Jones PhD, Sagescript Institute
The Colorado Safe Personal Care Act: How Will it Affect You, Lisa Rodgers, Cactus & Ivy
You Can Die From Salt, Too, Anne Marie Faiola, Bramble Berry
Oppose Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act, Katherine Corkill, Sterling Minerals
From the President – Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act, Leigh O’Donnell, HSMG
Colorado versus the cosmetics industry, Sarva Natural Artisan Soaps
When Safety in Personal Care, Isn’t Safety At All, Jerell Klaver, Salus Natural Body Care
The Colorado No Product Law, Marge Clark, Nature’s Gift
Tilting at Windmills: The Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act, Emily Topsham, GCD Spa
Costly Confusion in Colorado: The Bubble Bill, Donna Maria Coles Johnson, IBN

Oppose the Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act, Aromatalk
House Bill 1248 Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act., MK Independent Beauty Consultants, We Will Not Fall Blog

Related Articles:
Colorado Proposes Ban on Cosmetics It Claims Cause Cancer, Cosmetic Design
Bill Proposes the Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act, Global Cosmetic Industry

Tell Colorado Legislators to Back off the Mary Kay Lady: Oppose HB 1248, Ben, Peoples Press Collective

We hope we have included all to date, please add additional blogs or articles in your comments so that we can continue to assemble a comprehensive list.  Thank you.

Marcia Elston and Rob Stitt
Samara Botane/Nature Intelligence

 Posted by at 5:52 pm
Feb 232010
 
by Kayla Fioravanti
Reprinted with permission

If you live in Colorado or sell cosmetics into Colorado it is time for you to speak up.  Colorado has a proposed a bill before them during this session known as The Colorado Safe Personal Products Act.  This Act is so broad and vague that if it passes in this form the personal care shelves in stores would go bare.  You can read the entire bill here.  To follow the bill as it is updated click here and change the range to House Bills 1201-1250 and then scan down to 1248.   

Capitol_front

As of February 3, 2010 the bill was assigned to House Judiciary Committee. There is a hearing scheduled March 1, 2010 for sponsors and those opposing the act to be heard.  The committee meets in room 0107 (in the basement of the Capitol) beginning at 1:30 pm.

You can find the phone number and email addresses of your Colorado State Representative here.  The bill is sponsored in the house by Dianne Primavera phone # 303-866-4667 click here to email, Dennis Apuan phone # 303-866-3069 click here to email, Karen Middleton phone # 303-866-3911 click here to email, Joe Miklosi Cap phone # 303-866-2910 click here to email. 

The Women’s Lobby of Colorado is holding open meetings.  They support this bill and even have the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics logo on their website.  Sadly, they have fallen for the bad science that the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics is using to cause hysteria.  The voices of small businesses in the personal care industry need to be heard.  The Women’s Lobby of Colorado meetings are held at Colorado Education Association on the corner of Colfax and Grant—1500 Grant St—from 12:00-1:15 pm in the Bluebell Room. You can park free in their lot if you sign in in the lobby. Lunch will be provided. Upcoming meetings will be held March 3, March 17, March 31, February 3, April 14 and April 28. 

I will go into the faults of this bill in greater depth within the next few days, but in the mean time let me point out some of the serious flaws of this bill. 

"The bill creates the "Colorado Safe Personal Care Products Act" (act), which prohibits a manufacturer from knowingly selling, offering for sale, or distributing for sale or use in Colorado on and after September 1, 2011, any personal care product that contains a chemical identified as causing cancer or reproductive toxicity."  HOUSE BILL 10-1248

Quick Response:  Will these chemicals be ones that cause cancer when topically applied at normal usage percentges or will this information come from studies in which rats were injected with 100% concentration of said ingredients?  There is a big difference between putting an diluated ingredient on the skin than injecting an ingredient into the body at full concentration. 

"THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY (23) DECLARES IT TO BE IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE PEOPLE OF THIS STATE (24) TO TAKE STEPS TO ENSURE THAT PERSONAL CARE PRODUCTS SOLD AND (25) USED IN THIS STATE ARE SAFE AND DO NOT CONTAIN SUBSTANCES THAT (26) CAUSE CANCER OR REPRODUCTIVE TOXICITY."  HOUSE BILL 10-1248

Quick Response:  There should be acceptable limits set and not a complete ban on ingredients.  Many things in nature in high doses are known to cause cancer; for instance the sun! 

"2 (1) "AUTHORITATIVE BODY" MEANS THE FOLLOWING AGENCIES OR (3) FORMALLY ORGANIZED PROGRAMS OR GROUPS RECOGNIZED AS (4) AUTHORITATIVE FOR PURPOSES OF IDENTIFYING CHEMICALS THAT CAUSE (5) CANCER OR REPRODUCTIVE TOXICITY:

6 (a) THE UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, (7) OR ITS SUCCESSOR AGENCY;

(8) (b) THE UNITED STATES FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, OR ITS (9) SUCCESSOR ENTITY;

10 (c) THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND (11) HEALTH, OR ITS SUCCESSOR ENTITY;

12 (d) THE NATIONAL TOXICOLOGY PROGRAM, OR ITS SUCCESSOR 13 PROGRAM; AND

14 (e) THE INTERNATIONAL AGENCY FOR RESEARCH ON CANCER, OR (15) ITS SUCCESSOR AGENCY." HOUSE BILL 10-1248

Quick Response:  I think this portion of the bill gets to the heart of the Environmental Working Group (EWG), aka Skin Deep, aka Campaign for Safe Cosmetics entire agenda.  The EWG wants to be that "or successor agency" mentioned in in the above list, my guess is the United Staes Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  The Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel is not listed as a resource for information on cosmetic ingredient safety.  Having any open ended "or successor agency" declare what causes cancer and what doesn’t is dangerous. 

The EPA is an interesting choice as an expert on cosmetics.  I read over there list of cancer causing chemicals and only a very small handful are used in cosmetics at all.  I will give further detail on this list and provide a link to it this week. 

"5 25-5-1204. Prohibition – sale of personal care products (6) containing unsafe chemicals. ON OR AFTER SEPTEMBER 1, 2011, A (7) MANUFACTURER SHALL NOT SELL, OFFER FOR SALE, DISTRIBUTE FOR SALE, (8) OR DISTRIBUTE FOR USE IN THIS STATE ANY PERSONAL CARE PRODUCT (9) THAT CONTAINS A CHEMICAL IDENTIFIED AS CAUSING CANCER OR (10) REPRODUCTIVE TOXICITY. (11) 25-5-1205. Enforcement by private citizens – civil penalty. (12) (1) ANY PERSON ALLEGING A VIOLATION OF SECTION 25-5-1204 MAY (13) BRING AN ACTION AGAINST THE MANUFACTURER IN A COURT OF (14) COMPETENT JURISDICTION IN THE COUNTY WHERE THE VIOLATION (15) OCCURRED. UPON FINDING A VIOLATION, IN ADDITION TO ANY OTHER (16) RELIEF AUTHORIZED BY LAW, THE COURT SHALL ORDER THE (17) MANUFACTURER TO CEASE AND DESIST CONDUCT VIOLATING SECTION (18) 25-5-1204 AND SHALL ORDER THE MANUFACTURER TO PAY THE (19) PREVAILING PARTY REASONABLE ATTORNEY FEES AND COSTS.

20 (2) A MANUFACTURER THAT VIOLATES SECTION 25-5-1204 IS (21) SUBJECT TO A CIVIL PENALTY OF UP TO FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS PER (22) VIOLATION PER PRODUCT FOR A FIRST OFFENSE, AND UP TO TEN THOUSAND (23) DOLLARS PER VIOLATION PER PRODUCT FOR A SECOND OR SUBSEQUENT (24) OFFENSE. PENALTIES COLLECTED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL BE (25) DEPOSITED IN THE GENERAL FUND." HOUSE BILL 10-1248

Quick Response: Translation, the State of Colorado cannot afford to enforce this insane bill so they are leaving it in the hands of citizens to sue cosmetic companies.  After California passed California Proposition 65 there was wide spread abuse.  The lawyers got rich in California and companies wasted countless man hours and dollars defending themselves from all these lawsuits. 

This bill does not address "naturally occuring" substances found in natural ingredients.  For instance, lead would be banned, but lead is in water and cosmetics contain water.  The issue is severly complicated with naturally occuring substances since there is a complete ban and not tolerable levels.

A great example of by-product of some cosmetics is formaldehyde. In 1987, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classified formaldehyde as a probable human carcinogen under conditions of unusually high or prolonged exposure.  In cosmetics there is not an unusually high or prolonged exposure to formaldehyde.  tissues. Formaldehyde is water soluble and is not stored in fat so it can be metabolized very quickly with a half life in the human body of about 1.5 minutes.

For a list of formaldehyde preservatives read here.  Formaldehyde is naturally produced our bodies, the air that we breathe, and even the food we eat.  Formaldehyde is emitted as a natural by-product in the cooking of certain vegetables like, Brussels sprouts and cabbage.

How many small companies could afford to do business in Colorado if this bill passes as it is written today?  Would you risk being fined $5000 or $10,000 when citizen take up bounty hunting cosmetic products for the promised cash reward?  If you were completely innocent could you afford to defend yourself from these potential lawsuits?

 Posted by at 10:49 am