California Toxic Toy Law

Law AB 1108 (Ma) was signed into law in 2007 making California the first state in the country to ban the use of phthalates (Dictionary of Pet Food and Product Additives) from children's products. U.S. EPA studies show the cumulative impact of different phthalates leads to an exponential increase in associated harm. According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), levels of phthalates found in humans are higher than levels shown to cause adverse health effects. The data also show phthalate levels are highest in children. Since many animal companions put plastic toys purchased in other stores in their mouths as well, I am sure the levels of phthalates in our animals would be as high as those found in children, if not higher!

The law reads:

(a) Commencing January 1, 2009, no person or entity shall manufacture, sell, or distribute in commerce any toy or child care article that contains di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), dibutyl phthalate (DBP), or benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP), in concentrations exceeding 0.1 percent.
(b) Commencing January 1, 2009, no person or entity shall manufacture, sell, or distribute in commerce any toy or child care article intended for use by a child under three years of age if that product can be placed in the child's mouth and contains diisononyl phthalate (DINP), diisodecyl phthalate (DIDP), or di-n-octyl phthalate (DnOP), in concentrations exceeding 0.1 percent.108939. (a) Manufacturers shall use the least toxic alternative when replacing phthalates in accordance with this chapter.
(b) Manufacturers shall not replace phthalates, pursuant to this chapter, with carcinogens rated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency as A, B, or C carcinogens, or substances listed as known or likely carcinogens, known to be human carcinogens, likely to be human carcinogens, or suggestive of being human carcinogens, as described in the "List of Chemicals Evaluated for Carcinogenic Potential," or known to the state to cause cancer as listed in the California Safe Drinking Water Act (Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 116270) of Part 12).
(c) Manufacturers shall not replace phthalates, pursuant to this chapter, with reproductive toxicants that cause birth defects, reproductive harm, or developmental harm as identified by the United States Environmental Protection Agency or listed in the California Safe Drinking Water Act (Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 116270) of Part 12).