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Nationwide Should be Applauded for Pro-Safety Super Bowl Ad

February 5, 2015 | Blog | By Charles Samuels

Last Sunday, during the Super Bowl, Nationwide Insurance ran a controversial commercial entitled “Make Safe Happen.”  The advertisement features a young child experiencing memorable moments growing up.  However, viewers are informed that the child would not actually experience these moments because he “died from an accident.” 
A vote by European Union (EU) lawmakers in mid-January gave individual governments within the 28-nation bloc the authority to decide whether genetically modified organisms (GMOs) can be grown and cultivated within their borders. 
Do local governments, such as town councils and county legislatures, have a role in regulating consumer products that is typically reserved for the federal and state governments?

Proposition 65 May Mean More Than Warning Signs and Lawsuits

January 20, 2015 | Blog | By Daniel Herling

As this space has discussed, Proposition 65 has been the subject of attempts by the California Legislature to reform the enforcement of the law.
Following an ABC 20/20 investigative story where CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye called Craigslist's failure to block the sale of recalled products "morally irresponsible," the agency announced yesterday that it has entered into an agreement with the Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group (“Alibaba”) to stop the sale of products recalled by the CPSC to U.S. consumers.
On January 5, 2015, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced that Gerber Legendary Blades, a division of Fiskars Brands Inc., has agreed to pay a $2.6 million civil penalty to resolve charges that it knowingly failed to immediately report to the CPSC a safety hazard associated with its Gator Combo Axe. 
In our continuing efforts to highlight litigation trends that affect consumer product companies, we often focus on class actions brought in California and, especially, its federal Northern District. 

Ho Ho Ho GMO! The 2014 GMO Legislation Scorecard

December 23, 2014 | Blog | By Mina Nasseri

his has been a big year for GMO legislation.  In 2014 alone, 25 states have proposed 67 pieces of legislation aimed either at the labeling of products containing GMOs or at the ban of GMO-containing crops. 

Update: Syngenta Litigation Regarding GMO Corn

December 18, 2014 | Blog | By Russell Kott

In a recent post, we detailed lawsuits filed by corn exporters, farmers, and other stakeholders against Syngenta Corp. regarding its marketing of corn which contains genetically modified (“GMO”) traits that have not been approved for export to countries such as China. 
As we've explored in past posts, Congress is currently considering a bill that aims to harmonize the patchwork of state efforts at regulating GMO labeling by placing such regulation firmly within FDA's jurisdiction.
Yesterday congressional leaders announced that they reached a deal on an omnibus bill that will fund the federal government through September 30, 2015. Included in this bill is $123 million in funding for the CPSC, which is the amount the agency requested in its 2015 Budget Request and an increase of $5 million from what the agency received in 2014.
Last month, Archer Daniels Midland Co. (“ADM”) joined a slew of corn exporters and other stakeholders who have sued Syngenta based on allegations that China rejected these exporters’ products because Syngenta’s genetically modified corn seed, which contains a trait that China has not yet approved for import, was not kept separate from the plaintiffs’ products.
Tomorrow, December 5, 2014, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) will be briefed by staff on a recommendation to issue a proposed rule to permanently prohibit five phthalates – DINP, DIBP, DPENP, DHEXP, DCHP – from children’s toys and child care articles.  The use of three phthalates – DEHP, DBP, and BBP – in these products is already prohibited by law.
Late this afternoon the U.S. Senate confirmed current Commissioner and former Acting-Chairman Robert S. Adler to a second 7 year term as a CPSC Commissioner by a 53-44 vote.
n recent years, we've noticed a new maneuver that class-action defense counsel have increasingly added to their playbooks: The Pick Off. 
Yesterday evening, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) filed cloture on the re-nomination of Robert Adler to be a Commissioner of the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). 

CPSC Focusing on Three Areas for Reduction of CPSIA Testing Burdens

November 19, 2014 | Blog | By Matthew Howsare

At their April Senate confirmation hearing, both incoming CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye and Commissioner Joe Mohorovic pledged to Senator John Thune (R-SD) to submit plans for reducing third party testing burdens within 60 days of confirmation.
As we’ve explored in past posts, mandatory GMO-labeling legislation has, at best, a spotty track record among state legislatures.

November Elections Impact the Food & Beverage Industry (Part 1)

November 6, 2014 | Blog | By Mina Nasseri

Bids to require mandatory labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMO) were voted down in Colorado and Oregon on Tuesday. 
On October 28, 2014, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced that Baja Inc., and its corporate affiliate, One World Technologies Inc., of Anderson, S.C., agreed to pay a $4.3 million civil penalty to resolve charges that it knowingly failed to immediately report certain defects and an unreasonable risk of serious injury involving some of the company’s mini-bikes and go-carts.
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