California Prop 65 Chemical Warning

Why is there a warning label on my Key Leaves product?

If you spend much time in California, you’re probably getting used to seeing warning signs about Proposition 65 chemical warnings. They’re on display at restaurants, banks, gas stations, grocery stores, even Disneyland. But why is there a proposition 65 warning on some Key Leaves products? We share Prop 65 warning labels on some of our products out of an abundance of caution to comply with California Prop 65. The list for potentially hazardous chemicals under California Prop 65 is not static and currently lists over 900 chemicals. The California law allows anyone to sue companies for lack of warning. Our label exists to protect us as we cannot test all products for a variable list of over 900 chemicals.

What is California Proposition 65?

In 1986, California voters approved the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act (known as “Proposition 65”). Proposition 65 is a “Right to Know” statute; its initial purpose was to make sure people are aware, before they purchase, that the product they come into contact with contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm. While the initial intentions were good, the State of California has listed over 900 chemicals that must be disclosed under Prop 65 of which many have been determined to be safe by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Food Safety Authority.

Sadly, as of March 2024, the California Prop 65 law exempts small businesses like ours with less than 10 employees. So under the law we should not have to bear the expense and risks of the sweeping California chemical warning label law. Sadly, that exemption does nothing to stop individuals and law firms from using the California Prop 65 law to sue small family businesses. Several great small businesses in our industry have been sued via class action lawsuit using this California law. As a result those family businesses had to pay tens of thousands of dollars plus legal fees just to settle legal claims they were supposedly exempted from. So in an abundance of caution, we try our best to comply with the mandates of Prop 65.

Why is this label included on my Key Leaves product if I don’t live in California?

Key Leaves products are sold worldwide. It would be ridiculously complex to determine which products will be ultimately sold or brought into California. Therefore, to ensure compliance with California Proposition 65 requirements, we decided to include these labels on a range of products, regardless of where they might be purchased or sold.

Where can I find out more information about Proposition 65?

The State of California provides Proposition 65 information on the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment website (