Starbucks and several other coffee companies might have to start listing cancer warnings in California.
The cancer warning comes from a list of what California considers to be a possible factor in causing cancer. On this list is a chemical called acrylamide which is produced when the coffee bean is roasted and is a known carcinogen that is produced naturally during the process of baking or frying some foods. California added acrylamide to its carcinogen list in January 1990, and the state has successfully taken companies to court over it ever since. Companies this includes are Frito Lay and Heinz.
Several coffee companies such as Starbucks and 7-11 have argued in court that the amount of acrylamide in coffee should be safe and that the health benefits of coffee essentially outweigh the risk. Their reasoning was not found in favor by the court. At least 13 of the defendants, like 7-11, had settled prior to this decision and agreed to give a warning. The other coffee companies, including Starbucks, waited for a court decision. The companies have until April 10 to file objections to the proposed decision. After this there will be a final decision. At that time, a judge will help decide what the penalties and solution should be if companies don’t settle before then.
Coffee has been shown to have many health benefits such as reducing the risk of Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s and many other cancers.