Friday, August 19, 2011
Registration Requirements of the Safe Cosmetics Act
Registration Requirements of the Safe cosmetics Act
Registration of cosmetics manufacturers seems reasonable, and I think that anyone who makes cosmetics should be registered with the FDA. By doing so it allows open communication between FDA and cosmetics manufacturers so that information about ingredient toxicity can be openly shared. Its interesting though that this bill exempts small businesses, those that sell less than $2M annually, from registering with the FDA. I am confused about the reason for this. Without registering there is no open communication and no means for small businesses to get up to date information from the FDA. It also brings up the suspicion by consumers and other regulatory organizations that small businesses do not necessarily make safe cosmetics since they are not in contact with FDA. This is anything but leveling the playing field. As a small (micro) business I do not want to feel second rate and am proud to be voluntarily registered with the FDA already.
Cosmetic companies would be required to file a report of all cosmetics they produce and the functions of such cosmetics. The FDA already defines cosmetics as "articles intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on, introduced into, or otherwise applied to the human body...for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance" so its unclear if they are wanting more information on the function of the cosmetic or not. Reporting gross sales from cosmetics is required; forcing small privately owned businesses to reveal personal financial information. Yes, I do feel like this violates my rights. Sole proprietorship's and LLCs should not be required to make public their personal finances. I’m curious how FDA will even be able to keep track of this, especially when small businesses are not even required to register. I fear a lot of companies will be trying to ‘fly under the wire’ or go ‘underground’ so to speak, not have the knowledge they need and make unsafe cosmetics because of that.
The part I mainly object to is that companies must supply the name and address of any company that supplies ingredients. This is especially difficult for a small company as suppliers can change frequently. This prevents any last minute changes in formulas. If I happen to run out of olive oil from my supplier I have listed, I cannot go to the grocery store to buy emergency olive oil as I have been known to do. Any errors or inaccuracies in information submitted can lead to cancellation of registration or even
What's an alternative? I think cosmetics companies should all register with the FDA. This allows a path of communication between the FDA and manufacturers that is important. Not only to receive up to date information from the FDA but also for the FDA to receive information from manufacturers and consumers on adverse reactions. Fees can and should be waived for small companies. Suppliers should not have to be reported to the FDA. If olive oil is safe why does the FDA care who I buy it from? As long as safe ingredients are used it doesn't seem like a good use of FDA time to have to keep track of where I buy them from.
But what's worse is that now legislation is being introduced in a number of states to regulate cosmetics at that level as well. This means there is a good chance that you will have to deal with this type of registration in each and every state as well as at the national level.
If you are a small business how do you feel about this part of the bill?