SACRAMENTO, CALIF. — California Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 418 into law on Oct. 7. The state legislation will ban the use of Red No. 3, brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate and propylparaben after Jan. 1, 2027.
“The additives addressed in this bill are already banned in various other countries,” Mr. Newsom said. “Signing this into law is a positive step forward on these four food additives until the US Food and Drug Administration reviews and establishes national updated safety levels for these additives.”
Legislation originally proposed in California’s House of Representatives also included titanium dioxide among the ingredients to be banned, but the state Senate amended the bill to not include the ingredient.
“They’re making decisions based on soundbites rather than science,” the National Confectioners Association (NCA) said. “Governor Newsom’s approval of this bill will undermine consumer confidence and create confusion around food safety.
“This law replaces a uniform national food safety system with a patchwork of inconsistent state requirements created by legislative fiat that will increase food costs. This is a slippery slope that the FDA could prevent by engaging on this important topic. We should be relying on the scientific rigor of the FDA in terms of evaluating the safety of food ingredients and additives.”
When asked if the NCA would challenge the legislation in court, Christopher Gindlesperger, senior vice president of public affairs of communications at the association, said, “NCA is exploring all options.”
Specifically, the bill would prohibit a person or entity from manufacturing, selling, delivering, distributing, holding or offering for sale in commerce a food product for human consumption that contains any of the four substances. A violation would be punishable by a civil penalty not to exceed $5,000 for a first violation and not to exceed $10,000 for each subsequent violation.
Brominated vegetable oil often is used in fruit-flavored beverages, according to the FDA. Potassium bromate is an oxidizing agent used as a food additive, mainly in the bread-making process, and propylparaben is used as a preservative in foods, and it also is found in water-based cosmetics, according to the National Institutes of Health.