Coffee Cancer Concerns? CA Court to Rule Whether Cancer Warning is Needed Under Prop 65
California residents may see more Proposition 65 warnings at coffee shops in the near future. A state court is expected to issue a decision in the coming months regarding a 2010 60-day notice and 2012 court filing in which the Council for Education and Research on Toxics alleged 90 companies had failed to warn consumers regarding the presence of acrylamide, which is listed as a carcinogen and reproductive toxicant under Proposition 65.
While many coffee retailers (including 7-Eleven) have settled and agreed to both pay $2 million in penalties and other fees and provide a warning, Starbucks and other companies have resisted and are hopeful that a Los Angeles court will find that their coffees contain an adequately low level of acrylamide so as to not require a warning. (In the meantime, at least some stores of companies that have yet to settle have placed warnings in their stores, pending the outcome of the litigation.) Products causing exposure of more than 0.2 micrograms per day require a warning under Proposition 65.
A private mediation with the nine remaining defendants is scheduled for February 8.