California Becomes First State to Ban Four Additives

October 11, 2023

Californians will still be able to access and enjoy their favorite food products, with greater confidence in the safety of such products.

California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) who signed a bill into law on Saturday making California the first state to ban four food and drink additives.

Why It Matters: California became the first U.S. state to ban additives tied to numerous diseases, including cancer. The California Food Safety Act will prohibit the sale, distribution or manufacture of food and drink containing brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate, propylparaben and red dye No. 3. Companies that produce items containing these ingredients have until 2027 to alter their recipes.

Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel (D), who authored the bill, said, “This bill will not ban any foods or products — it simply will require food companies to make minor modifications to their recipes and switch to the safer alternative ingredients that they already use in Europe and so many other places around the globe.”

The National Confectioners Association said the law “replaces a uniform national food safety system with a patchwork of inconsistent state requirements created by legislative fiat that will increase food costs.”

Worth Noting: The use of brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate, propylparaben and red dye No. 3 is restricted in some parts of the world, including in the European Union. The FDA banned red dye No. 3 from being used in cosmetics in 1990.

Unwrapping California’s food additives ban (Axios)

California becomes the first state to ban 4 food additives linked to disease (NPR)

Newsom signs bill to make California first state in nation to ban ‘toxic’ food additives (LA Times)

by Jenna Lee,