Whole Foods, others Named in Suit Filed by California AG over Carcinogens

Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal

The Attorney General of California filed suit against body care and household-cleaning product companies whose products recently tested highest for a carcinogenic contaminant.
Under California's Prop. 65, consumer products that contain toxic levels of 1,4-Dioxane must have warning labels stating they may cause cancer. 1,4-Dioxane is typically produced as a byproduct when ingredients are ethoxylated with the petrochemical ethylene oxide, a process which has become standard practice for many cleansing and moisturizing products.
The suit, California v. Avalon Natural Products (manufacturer of the Alba brand), also names Whole Foods Market California (manufacturer of the Whole Foods 365 brand), Beaumont Products (manufacturer of the Citrus Magic brand), and Nutribiotic.
Beaumont Products was the only one of the companies to respond so far, according to Oakland-based Organic Consumers Association. "Upon being notified that there was a problem with our product, we verified that the problem existed, then took immediate action," Beaumont responded to the OCA. The company has reformulated its products to remove the problematic ingredient.
The California Attorney General alleges the companies should have put warning labels on products containing high levels of 1,4-Dioxane, stating that they may cause cancer.
The lawsuit states, "Plaintiff alleges that each defendant has known since at least May 29, 2004 that the body washes and gels and liquid dish soaps contain, 1,4-Dioxane and that persons using these products are exposed to 1,4-Dioxane." Per Proposition 65, fines for mislabeled products are as high as $2,500 per day for each violation.

Click on the title above for the original June,11, 2008 article.

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