BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



          SENATE COMMITTEE ON HEALTH
                          Senator Ed Hernandez, O.D., Chair

          BILL NO:                    SB 65     
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          |AUTHOR:        |Wolk                                           |
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          |VERSION:       |March 9, 2015                                  |
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          |HEARING DATE:  |April 22, 2015 |               |               |
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          |CONSULTANT:    |Vince Marchand                                 |
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           SUBJECT  :  Food labeling:  olive oil

           SUMMARY  :  Revises olive oil labeling requirements by deleting language  
          that requires labels referring to approved American Viticultural  
          Areas (AVAs) be at least 75 percent from that AVA, and instead  
          requiring olive oils labeled as coming from a specific region in  
          California to be made from at least 85 percent of olives grown  
          in that specific region. Also requires olive oils labeled as  
          coming from a specific estate in California to be 95 percent  
          from olives grown on that specified estate.
          
          Existing law:
          1.Requires any olive oil produced, processed, sold or possessed  
            in California, that indicates on its label "California Olive  
            Oil," or uses words that indicate that California is the  
            source of the oil, to be made of oil derived solely from  
            olives grown in California.

          2.Requires any olive oil produced, processed, sold or possessed  
            in California that indicates on its label that is from one of  
            the approved AVAs, as defined in federal regulations, to be  
            made of oil of which at least 75 percent is derived solely  
            from olives grown in that approved AVA.
          
          This bill:
          1.Deletes the requirement that at least 75 percent of olive oil  
            that is labeled as coming from an approved AVA be derived from  
            olives grown in that AVA, and instead requires 85 percent, by  
            weight, of the olive oil that is labeled as coming from a  
            specific region in California to be made from olives grown in  
            the specified region.

          2.Requires olive oil produced, processed, sold or possessed in  







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            California, that indicates on its label that it is from a  
            specific estate in California, to be made of oil at least 95  
            percent of which, by weight, is derived from olives grown on  
            the specified estate.

          3.Makes other technical, clarifying changes to olive oil  
            labeling requirements.

           FISCAL  
          EFFECT  :  This bill has not been analyzed by a fiscal committee.
           
          COMMENTS  :
          1.Author's statement.  According to the author, California law  
            contains outdated language relating to utilizing California  
            and its regions in the labeling of olive oil by referencing  
            AVAs established by the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and  
            Trade Bureau, which regulates wine. This bill will replace the  
            outdated language with language that incorporates the Olive  
            Oil Commission of California standards for 'California'  
            labeling and applies it to all California olive oil producers.

          2.Olive Oil Commission of California standards. SB 250 (Wolk),  
            Chapter 344, Statutes of 2013, created the Olive Oil Commission  
            of California (OOCC) to engage in olive oil quality and  
            nutritional research and to recommend grading and labeling  
            standards to the California Department of Food and Agriculture  
            (CDFA). The OOCC developed California olive oil grading and  
            labeling standards to apply only to those producing more than  
            5,000 gallons of olive oil, refined-olive oil, or olive-pomace  
            oil, per year. In pertinent part, the regulations require: 100  
            percent of the oil to be from olives grown in the state of  
            California; if reference is made to a specific region in  
            California, then at least 85 percent of the oil (by weight) to  
            be from olives grown in that region; and, if reference is made  
            to a specific estate within California, then at least 95  
            percent of the oil (by weight) to be from olives grown on that  
            estate. CDFA approved these recommendations, and they became  
            effective on September 26, 2014.


          3.Double referral. This bill was heard in the Senate Agriculture  
            Committee on April 7, 2015, and passed with a 5-0 vote.
            
          4.Prior legislation. SB 250 (Wolk), Chapter 344, Statutes of  
            2013, created an Olive Oil Commission of California to engage  








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            in olive oil quality and nutritional research and to recommend  
            grades and labeling standards.  

            SB 411 (Wolk), of 2013, would have required any olive oil  
            produced, processed, sold or possessed in California, that  
            indicates on its label that it is from an area that is one of  
            the approved American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) established  
            pursuant to federal regulations, to be made of oil derived  
            solely from olives grown in that approved AVA, rather than the  
            existing law requirement that at least 75 percent of the oil  
            be derived from olives grown in the AVA. SB 411 was approved  
            by this committee, but was later amended in the Assembly to  
            address a different subject matter.

            SB 818 (Wolk), Chapter 567, Statutes of 2011, redefined  
            California's olive labeling requirements to conform to the  
            United States labeling standards as outlined in the U.S.  
            Standards for Grades of Olive Oil and Olive-Pomace Oil  
            published in the Federal Register, as specified.

            SB 634 (Wiggins), Chapter 694, Statutes of 2008, clarified the  
            definition of olive oil, conformed olive oil definitions,  
            grades, and labeling requirements to international standards,  
            authorized the addition of vitamin E to specified olive oil,  
            and permitted a consumer to re-use a clean olive oil  
            container, can, or drum.

            SB 920 (Thompson), Chapter 543, Statutes of 1997, specified  
            that olive oil labeled as California olive oil must be made  
            from California olives.  SB 920 also required olive oil  
            labeled as coming from an AVA to have at least 75 percent of  
            the oil made from olives grown in that AVA.
            
           SUPPORT AND OPPOSITION :
          Support:  None received.
          
          Oppose:   None received.

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