Angela Diesch, Managing Partner of the law firm Diesch Forrest, APC, represents local, national, and international companies, including manufacturers and distributors of consumer products, in broad-based commercial, product liability, and class action litigation.
Angela provides regulatory and business services primarily in the food, over-the-counter (OTC) drug and cosmetic industries. She works with conventional and organic agricultural growers, conventional and organic food manufacturers, and cosmetic and OTC drug companies to ensure regulatory compliance with California state law and the statutes and regulations enforced by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Federal Trade Commission and other regulatory agencies. Angela also prepares a wide range of business documents for industry members, including manufacturing, supply and distribution agreements.
Angela’s unique focus on natural and organic consumer products includes extensive experience assisting with product packaging and labeling issues, certification and resolution of disputes regarding compliance with the National Organic Program (NOP) and California Organic Products Act (COPA), as well as defending companies from both governmental agencies and private litigants in class and mass tort litigation matters involving breach of contract, unfair competition, false advertising, the Consumer Legal Remedies Act, and Lanham Act violations.
Cosmetic, OTC Drug, Food & Agriculture
- Compliance with the federal Food, Drug, & Cosmetic Act and its implementing regulations
- Compliance with Fair Packaging and Labeling Act
- Compliance with FTC regulations
- Compliance with the Organic Foods Production Act (OFPA), National Organic Program (NOP) and the California Organic Products Act (COPA)
- Reviewing labeling, advertising, and marketing materials to ensure compliance with applicable state and federal statutes and regulations
- Advising companies about introduction and proper classification of products in the U.S. marketplace
- Assisting companies with the decision to initiate voluntary recalls and facilitating communication with the FDA
- Preparing and reviewing business documents, including non-disclosure agreements, manufacturing, distribution, supply, and employment agreements
- Product label review for compliance with OTC Monographs
- Litigation defense in matters involving:
- Products liability and toxic tort claims
- False advertising claims
- Unfair competition claims
- Slack-fill claims
- Lanham Act
- Consumer Legal Remedies Act
- California Organic Products Act (COPA)
- General commercial litigation including breach of contract
- Trademark infringement and trade dress
- Defending multiple cosmetics manufacturers in putative class action lawsuits regarding various “natural” claims on cosmetic products.
- Defended cosmetic manufacturer against deceptive business practices and false advertising claims regarding “all natural” claim on cosmetic products. Successfully negotiated a settlement for nationwide class relief that involved injunctive relief to the class with minimal payment of attorneys’ fees.
- Defended organic producer in class action alleging unfair competition claim regarding use of organic claims on labeling.
- Defended large cosmetic company against competitor alleging unfair competition claims and Lanham Act claims regarding use of the phrase “100% organic.”
- Reviewed product labeling for multiple large and small cosmetic companies for compliance with Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulations and U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) organic laws, and provided advice regarding “natural,” “sustainable,” and anti-aging claims on packaging.
- Advised multiple cosmetic companies regarding transitioning from cosmetic to OTC drug manufacturing and labeling.
- Represented organic growers before the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).
- Represented organic growers in dispute between grower and third party certifier
- Defended cosmetics companies against alleged slack-fill violations brought by individuals and California district attorneys.
Professional Activities & Affiliations
- Chair, Global Retailers and Manufacturers Alliance’s Joint Committee on Good Manufacturing Practices for Cosmetics
- Advisory Board Member, Natural and Organics Health and Beauty Alliance
- Board Member, Sacramento County Bar Association, Diversity Fellowship Program
- Member, American Bar Association
- Volunteer, California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. (2007)
- Volunteer, Yolo County Court Appointed Special Advocates, Inc. (2000-2003)
Articles & Publications
- Quoted, “Navigating the Personal Care Products Safety Act“, CosmeticsDesign.com, April 27, 2015
- Quoted, “Slack fill: How Much is Too Much?”, CosmeticsDesign.com, October 15, 2014
- Quoted, “Sunscreen Innovation Act Looks Set for Approval,” CosmeticsDesign.com, September 29, 2014
- Author, “Hain’s Legal Battles Offer Class Action Defense Strategies,” The National Law Review, July 15, 2014
- Author, “FDA Warns of Rare but Potentially Severe Side Effects in Acne Drug Products,” The National Law Review, July 2, 2014
- Author, “FDA Issues Guidance for Safety of Nanomaterials in Cosmetic Products (as well as in Food),” The National Law Review, July 2, 2014
- Quoted, “What the New FDA Guidance on Nanomaterials Means for Cosmetic Players,” CosmeticsDesign.com, July 2, 2014
- Quoted, “Personal Care Lawyer Says FDA Warning on Acne Products Spells Audit Time,” CosmeticsDesign.com, July 1, 2014
- Interviewed, “Cosmetics Lawyer Points Out the Pitfalls to Green Marketing,” CosmeticsDesign.com, May 8, 2014
- Author, “Tom’s of Maine Hit with ‘Natural’ Lawsuit,” The National Law Review, March 21, 2014
- Quoted, “FDA Ups the Ante on Imported Anti-Aging Skin Care Products,” CosmeticsDesign.com, March 10, 2014
- Co-Author, “The Year in Calif. Employment Law: What to Know for 2014,” Law360, December 11, 2013
- Quoted, “FDA Warning Letter Focus on Unintentional Drug Claims for Cosmetics,” CosmeticsDesign.com, July 25, 2013
- Quoted, “EU Ban Helpful or Hindering?” SupplySide Cosmetics Insights, March 2013
- Co-Author, “Sunscreen Label and Performance Compliance,” SupplySide Cosmetics Insights, January 2013
- Author, “Is Your Makeup Also Skin Care? Are You Sure?” SupplySide Cosmetics Insights, October 2012
- Author, “Northern District of CA Rules USDA Has Primary Jurisdiction Over ‘Organic’ Cosmetic Claims,” Inside Cosmeceuticals Blog, August 8, 2012
- Author, “Coping with COPA: CA’s Strict standards for Labeling Cosmetics ‘Organic’,” Inside Cosmeceuticals Blog, May 9, 2012
- Speaker, “Greenwashing: FDA/FTC Investigations on the Rise – How to Safeguard Your Company” at Natural Products Expo West, March 11, 2017
- Speaker, ” ‘Natural’ Where are we at?”, Organic Monitor’s Green Materials Masterclass, San Francisco, January 29, 2016
- Webinar presenter, “HAIR LOSS: Does the technology exist to really beat it?”, CosmeticsdesignUSA, December 10, 2015
- Speaker, “Substantiated Cosmetic Claims: Clarifying the Hard Evidence,” IQPC Global Cosmetics Compliance, Amsterdam, June 9, 2015
- Speaker, “Impending Regulations: CARB & The Personal Care Products Safety Act. Where We Are & How Should Brands Be Prepared” California Society of Cosmetic Chemists Dinner, May 26, 2015
- Speaker, “An Overview of EDD and Workers’ Compensation Audits for Domestic Referral Agencies,” California Coalition of Domenstic Referral Agencies, October 11, 2014
- Speaker, “2014 Legal & Regulatory Outlook for Green Marketing,” Sustainable Cosmetics Summit, May 16, 2014
- Speaker, “Current Status of Natural and Organic Cosmetic Claims,” Personal Care Products Council (PCPC) Webinar, October 29, 2013
- Speaker, “Green Marketing Claims & Labeling: Pitfalls and Best-Practices,” Sustainable Cosmetics Summit, May 17, 2013
- Speaker, “It Does What? Prove it! – The Growing Importance of Claim Substantiation up the Supply Chain,” SupplySide Marketplace: SupplySide Why, May 2, 2013
- Speaker, “Marketing Claims for Natural Personal Care Products,” Natural Cosmetics Masterclass: Green Formulations, Organic Monitor, San Francisco, CA, January 24, 2013
- Speaker, “Labor & Employment Update,” A CAPA-tol Idea: Invest in Yourself, 23rd Annual CAPA Educational Conference, Sacramento, CA, June 23, 2012
- Panelist, “Organic Personal Care: COPA’s Impact,” Natural Products Expo West, Anaheim, CA, March 9, 2012
Admitted to Practice
- All California State Courts
- United States District Court, Eastern, Northern, Southern and Central Districts