The Coffee roasting defendants in the Starbucks trial have filed a motion to stay the action following a proposal by California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) that would essentially exempt coffee products from Proposition 65 warnings.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle recently issued an order in CERT v. Toxics v. Starbucks setting a hearing date on the coffee roaster defendants’ request for a stay of the action on July 31 – the same day as the hearing on the plaintiff’s motion seeking a permanent injunction which could have potentially have resulted in defendants being required to sell their coffee products with a Prop. 65 warning in California.
OEHHA’s proposed rulemaking emphasizes that Prop. 65 chemicals are created “as part of the inherent processes of roasting coffee beans and brewing coffee.”
On June 15, California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) issued a notice of proposed rulemaking The notice further states that “[c]offee, a unique and complex chemical mixture made from the roasted seeds of the coffee plant, contains many different compounds, including carcinogens listed under Proposition 65, and anticarcinogenic compounds. .
OEHHA emphasizes that the proposed regulation is based on extensive scientific evidence that drinking coffee has not been shown to increase the risk of cancer, and may reduce the risk of some types of cancer.
The agency said that in a review of more than 1,000 studies, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) concluded that there is “inadequate evidence” that drinking coffee causes cancer.
IARC found evidence that coffee reduces the risk of breast cancer, cancers of the uterus, as well as the liver pancreas and prostate.
found that coffee is associated with reduced risk for cancers of the liver and uterus, and does not cause cancers The agency also concluded that ARC also found coffee drinking exhibits strong antioxidant effects related to reduced cancer risk.
OEHHA’s proposed rulemaking followed on the heels of Judge Berle’s April 12 ruling in the Starbucks case that the defendants did not establish that acrylamide in coffee was exempt from Prop. 65’s warning requirement.
Judge Berle ruled that the defendants did not establish a viable defense that an exception in the statute that exempts chemicals created by cooking necessary to render food safe and/or palatable applied to the coffee roasters defendants.