The bill, AB-1341 was introduced by Assemblywoman Christina Garcia early last year. Garcia represents a district in the Los Angeles area.
Her bill has cleared its initial committee hurdle and now sits with the Rules Committee of the California Senate. The goal of the bill is to “prohibit a retail establishment from selling dietary supplements for weight loss and over-the-counter diet pills, as defined, to any person under 18 years of age without a prescription. The bill would require a retail establishment, among other things, to limit access to those products, as specified, and would require the department to determine which products will be subject to those access limitations.”
If passed the bill would take effect on July 1, 2022.
Idea cropped up in other states
This is not the first bill of its type. Similar legislation has been introduced in Massachusetts, Illinois and others states. But Garcia’s measure stands the best chance of becoming law of any of those introduced to date.
NPA is urging its members and other industry stakeholders to voice their opposition to the bill.
“This is further than this idea has ever gone before in any other state,” said NPA president and CEO Daniel Fabricant, PhD. “If we put together a really good fight to stop it in California, all those other dominoes are going to start to fall.”
The common idea behind all of these bills is the purported link between weight management supplements and eating disorders. Fabricant said there is no research that establishes the notion that the use of weight management supplements causes or exacerbates eating disorders, but the idea seems rather to have arisen from anecdotal reports.
NPA also noted that the bill would require the state to develop a health warning to be attached to the products in addition to the federal labeling requirements that already govern the products.