60 Day Notice 2023-02801

AG Number: 
2023-02801
Notice PDF: 
Date Filed: 
09/14/2023
Noticing Party: 
Environmental Research Center, Inc.
Plaintiff Attorney: 
Michael Freund & Associates
Alleged Violators: 
Materne North America, Corp., individually and dba GoGo squeeZ
Chemicals: 
Lead and lead compounds
Mercury and mercury compounds
Source: 
Dietary supplements

60-Day Notice Document

Civil Complaint
AG Number:
2023-02801
Complaint PDF: 
Date Filed:
11/06/2023
Case Name: 
Environmental Research Center, vs. Materne North America
Court Name: 
Alameda County Superior Court - Hayward
Court Docket Number: 
23CV049930
Plaintiff: 
Environmental Research Center, Inc.
Plaintiff Attorney: 
Michael Freund
Defendant: 
Materne North America, Corp. dba Gogo Squeeze
Type of Claim: 
Failure to Warn
Relief Sought: 
Warning
Civil Penalty
Contact Name: 
Michael Freund
Contact Organization: 
Michael Freund & Associates
Email Address:
Address: 
1919 Addison Street, Suite 105
City, State, Zip:
Berkeley, CA 94704
Phone Number:
(510) 499-1992
Supplemental Settlement
AG Number:
2023-02801
Settlement PDF: 
Settlement Date:
01/04/2024
Case Name: 
Environmental Research Center vs. Materne North America
Court Name: 
Alameda County Superior Court - Hayward
Court Docket Number: 
23CV049930
Plaintiff: 
Environmental Research Center, Inc.
Plaintiff Attorney: 
Michael Freund & Associates
Defendant: 
Materne North America, Corp., individually and dba GoGo squeeZ
Injunctive Relief: 
Beginning on the Effective Date, Materne North America shall be permanently enjoined from manufacturing for sale in the State of California, "Distributing into the State of California," or directly selling in the State of California, any Covered Product that exposes a person to a "Daily Lead Exposure Level" of more than 0.5 micrograms of lead per day and/or a "Daily Mercury Exposure Level" of more than 0.3 micrograms of mercury per day unless it meets the warning requirements under Section 3.2.
*Non-Contingent Civil Penalty:
$ 80,000.00
Attorney(s) Fees and Costs:
$ 80,000.00
Payment in Lieu of Penalty:
$ 57,875.00  (4.4 $57,875.00 shall be distributed to ERC as an Additional Settlement Payment (“ASP”), pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, sections 3203, subdivision (d) and 3204. ERC will utilize the ASP for activities that address the same public harm as allegedly caused by Materne North America in this matter. These activities are detailed below and support ERC’s overarching goal of reducing and/or eliminating hazardous and toxic chemicals in consumer products in California. ERC’s activities have had, and will continue to have, a direct and primary effect within the State of California because California consumers will be benefitted by the reduction and/or elimination of exposure to lead and/or mercury in consumer products and/or by providing clear and reasonable warnings to California consumers prior to ingestion of the products. Based on a review of past years’ actual budgets, ERC is providing the following list of activities ERC engages in to protect California consumers through Proposition 65 citizen enforcement, along with a breakdown of how ASP funds will be utilized to facilitate those activities: (1) ENFORCEMENT (up to 65-80%): obtaining, shipping, analyzing, and testing products that may contain lead and/or mercury and are sold to California consumers. This work includes continued monitoring and enforcement of past consent judgments and settlements to ensure companies are in compliance with their obligations thereunder, with a specific focus on those judgments and settlements concerning lead and/or mercury. This work also includes investigation of new companies that ERC does not obtain any recovery through settlement or judgment; (2) VOLUNTARY COMPLIANCE PROGRAM (up to 10-20%): maintaining ERC’s Voluntary Compliance Program by acquiring products from companies, developing and maintaining a case file, testing products from these companies, providing the test results and supporting documentation to the companies, and offering guidance in warning or implementing a self-testing program for lead and/or mercury in dietary supplement products; and (3) “GOT LEAD” PROGRAM (up to 5%): maintaining ERC’s “Got Lead?” Program which reduces the numbers of contaminated products that reach California consumers by providing access to free testing for lead in products (Products submitted to the program are screened for ingredients which are suspected to be contaminated, and then may be purchased by ERC, catalogued, sent to a qualified laboratory for testing, and the results shared with the consumer that submitted the product). ERC shall be fully accountable in that it will maintain adequate records to document and will be able to demonstrate how the ASP funds will be spent and can assure that the funds are being spent only for the proper, designated purposes described in this Consent Judgment. ERC shall provide the Attorney General, within thirty days of any request, copies of documentation demonstrating how such funds have been spent. )
Total Payments:
$ 217,875.00
Will settlement be submitted to court?
Yes
Contact Name: 
Michael Freund
Contact Organization: 
Michael Freund & Associates
Address: 
1919 Addison Street, Suite 104
City, State, Zip:
Berkeley, CA 94704
Phone Number:
(510) 540-1992
Comments: 
This Amended Consent Judgment also includes 2023-00608, 2023-00752, 2023-00928, and 2023-02801 for litigation purposes.
Settlement
AG Number:
2023-02801
Settlement PDF: 
Settlement Date:
11/07/2023
Case Name: 
Environmental Research Center vs. Materne North America
Court Name: 
Alameda County Superior Court - Hayward
Court Docket Number: 
23CV049930
Plaintiff: 
Environmental Research Center, Inc.
Plaintiff Attorney: 
Michael Freund
Defendant: 
Materne North America, Corp. dba Gogo Squeez
Injunctive Relief: 
Beginning on the Effective Date, Materne North America shall be permanently enjoined from manufacturing for sale in the State of California, "Distributing into the State of California," and/or directly selling in the State of California, any Covered Product that exposes a person to a "Daily Lead Exposure Level" of more than 0.5 micrograms of lead per day and/or a "Daily Mercury Exposure Level" of more than 0.3 micrograms of mercury per day unless it meets the warning requirements set for in Section 3.2.
*Non-Contingent Civil Penalty:
$ 80,000.00
Attorney(s) Fees and Costs:
$ 78,559.00
Payment in Lieu of Penalty:
$ 66,441.00  (Reimbursement of ERC's costs in the amount of $8,566.32. $57,875.00 shall be distributed to ERC as an Additional Settlement Payment (“ASP”), pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, sections 3203, subdivision (d) and 3204. ERC will utilize the ASP for activities that address the same public harm as allegedly caused by Defendant in this matter. These activities are detailed below and support ERC’s overarching goal of reducing and/or eliminating hazardous and toxic chemicals in dietary supplement products in California. ERC asserts that its activities have had, and will continue to have, a direct and primary effect within the State of California because California consumers will be benefitted by the reduction and/or elimination of exposure to lead in dietary supplements and/or by providing clear and reasonable warnings to California consumers prior to ingestion of the products. Based on a review of past years’ actual budgets, ERC is providing the following list of activities ERC engages in to protect California consumers through Proposition 65 citizen enforcement, along with a breakdown of how ASP funds will be utilized to facilitate those activities: (1) ENFORCEMENT (65-80%): obtaining, shipping, analyzing, and testing dietary supplement products that may contain lead and are sold to California consumers. This work includes continued monitoring and enforcement of past consent judgments and settlements to ensure companies are in compliance with their obligations thereunder, with a specific focus on those judgments and settlements concerning lead. This work also includes investigation of new companies that ERC does not obtain any recovery through settlement or judgment; (2) VOLUNTARY COMPLIANCE PROGRAM (10-20%): maintaining ERC’s Voluntary Compliance Program by acquiring products from companies, developing and maintaining a case file, testing products from these companies, providing the test results and supporting documentation to the companies, and offering guidance in warning or implementing a self-testing program for lead in dietary supplement products; and (3) “GOT LEAD” PROGRAM (up to 5%): maintaining ERC’s “Got Lead?” Program which reduces the numbers of contaminated products that reach California consumers by providing access to free testing for lead in dietary supplement products (Products submitted to the program are screened for ingredients which are suspected to be contaminated, and then may be purchased by ERC, catalogued, sent to a qualified laboratory for testing, and the results shared with the consumer that submitted the product). ERC shall be fully accountable in that it will maintain adequate records to document and will be able to demonstrate how the ASP funds will be spent and can assure that the funds are being spent only for the proper, designated purposes described in this Consent Judgment. ERC shall provide the Attorney General, within thirty days of any request, copies of documentation demonstrating how such funds have been spent. )
Total Payments:
$ 225,000.00
Will settlement be submitted to court?
Yes
Contact Name: 
Michael Freund
Contact Organization: 
Michael Freund & Associates
Email Address:
freund1@aol.com
Address: 
1919 Addison Street, Suite 105
City, State, Zip:
Berkelely, CA 94704
Phone Number:
(510) 499-1992
Comments: 
Also includes AG Nos. 2023-00608, 2023-00752 and 2023-00928.


* A non-contingent civil penalty is the civil penalty that must be paid pursuant to the settlement, regardless of future events or actions of the defendant. If a settlement includes a contingent penalty, the plaintiff should report the additional penalty amount when it becomes due.