A coalition of seven industry groups have said that the proposed listing “nitrite in combination with amines or amides” as a carcinogen under Proposition 65 would be “unprecedented”, and unsupported by science.
In comments to the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), the coalition contends that this substance grouping is not “a chemical”. Nor is it a well-defined mixture or even a specific product, both of which have been listed on Prop 65 in the past.
Instead, it says, the state’s Carcinogen Identification Committee (CIC) has been tasked with evaluating nitrite in combination with “tens of thousands of unidentified amines and/or amides.”
“We are unaware of any precedent for such a proposal or how such an undefined category could possibly meet the robust scientific standard the state’s qualified experts require for listing a chemical as ‘known to cause cancer,’” says the group.
The comments came in response to OEEHA’s review of hazard identification materials of the chemical. These, and the public comments received, will inform the CIC’s consideration of whether to list it under Prop 65 when the committee meets on Nov 15.
The coalition – which includes the California Chamber of Commerce and the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) – says that neither Oehha, the CIC nor the public have a list of all the chemical combinations covered in the grouping. And, “it is unlikely one could be compiled.”
It says this is a significant problem for regulated businesses. They “would need organic chemistry degrees” to determine if products contain any of the covered substances. And it says it would be unlikely the agency could determine a safe harbor ‘no significant risk level’ (NSRL) as a consequence.