California could be banning Skittles, Hot Tamales candy, Dubble Bubble Twist Gum, and other food items containing certain chemicals that are toxic and dangerous.
California Assemblymembers Jesse Gabriel and Buffy Wicks have introduced a proposed bill, AB 418, that would ban the sale of food items containing chemicals that are believed to be toxic and dangerous.
According to The Hill, The bill aims to stop the manufacturing, selling, or distributing of foods containing Red Dye No. 3, Titanium Dioxide, Potassium Bromate, Brominated Vegetable Oil, or Propyl Paraben. These chemicals have been linked to significant health issues, including increased cancer risk, immune system damage, and behavioral issues in children.
While many Californians may not recognize these chemicals by name, they can be found in a variety of popular food and drink items.
Titanium Dioxide, for example, can be found in cupcakes, trail mix, and ice cream, while Propylparaben can be found in caramel chocolate.
Assemblymember Gabriel expressed concern about food safety saying, “Californians shouldn’t have to worry that the food they buy in their neighborhood grocery store might be full of dangerous additives or toxic chemicals,” Gabriel said in a statement. “This bill will correct for a concerning lack of federal oversight and help protect our kids, public health and the safety of our food supply.”
The bill is intended to close a loophole in federal law that has allowed these chemicals to enter the food supply without meaningful oversight from the FDA.
AB-318 will first be heard in the Assembly’s Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials Committee before heading to the Assembly’s Health Committee. It will need to pass both houses of the state legislature and be signed by Governor Gavin Newsom before it becomes law. If passed, California would be the first state to have such a law in place.
If AB-418 is successful, it could set a precedent for other states to follow in taking measures to protect the health and well-being of their citizens.