Coffee Comes With Cancer Warning In California, Judge Rules

April 2, 2018

A judge in Los Angeles, CA, has ruled that coffee companies in California must bear a cancer warning label due to a chemical that is produced during the roasting process, acrylamide, according to the Associated Press. Presiding over the case is Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle, who said that coffee companies failed to show that benefits from drinking coffee outweighed any risks.  

This lawsuit has been in the works for eight years and is still not over. A third phase of trial is yet to come which will determine civil penalties of up to $2,500 per person exposed each day over eight years, totaling an exorbitant figure in a state of 40 million.  

There has been some disagreement with the outcome of this ruling, including the many studies done on coffee which have shown its health benefits. According to the National Coffee Association (NCA), the World Health Organization also concluded that coffee is not carcinogenic, and may even help protect against some types of cancer. NCA president and CEO William "Bill" Murray told the TODAY Show 

"Coffee has been shown, over and over again, to be a healthy beverage. The US Government's own Dietary Guidelines state that coffee can be part of a healthy lifestyle. This lawsuit simply confuses consumers, and has the potential to make a mockery of Prop 65 cancer warnings at a time when the public needs clear and accurate information about health."