The judge said that, under California's Proposition 65, coffee chains are required to carry the signs. This is an "acceptable and appropriate" way to determine a carcinogenic effect, said J. Leonard Lichtenfeld, the American Cancer Society's deputy chief medical officer.
Companies across the state will have to add a cancer-warning label to coffee, a judge ruled this week, because the drink contains a chemical called acrylamide. They argue any risks are outweighed by other health benefits from drinking the beverage.
The World Health Organization (WHO) removed coffee from its list of "possible carcinogens" in 2016. For example, parking garages caution: "This area contains chemicals known to the state of California to cause cancer, birth defects and other reproductive harm".
Attorney Raphael Metzger, who brought the lawsuit and drinks a few cups of coffee a day, said he wants the industry to remove the chemical from its process.
The research, which collated evidence from more than 200 previous studies, also found coffee consumption was linked to lower risks of diabetes, liver disease, dementia and some cancers. The decision "does nothing to improve public health", he said in a statement.
'Coffee is much more complex than just acrylamide, ' says Dr Wilson.
Those could be as high as $2,500 per day to every customer, although such a figure is very unlikely. "Reducing coffee or French fries to their acrylamide content isn't how we study diet and nutrition".
Numerous signs that are posted, however, are in places not easily visible, such as below the counter where cream and sugar is available. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 13,889,820 shares of the coffee company's stock worth $809,917,000 after acquiring an additional 13,452,551 shares during the last quarter.
The defendants have two weeks to file objections. Starbucks declined to comment, referring reports to a statement by the National Coffee association (NCA) that said the industry was considering an appeal and further legal actions. California judges can reverse their tentative rulings, but rarely do.
It all started in 2010, when an NGO sued a group of coffee products merchants, including Starbucks, for violating the law since they are not placing cancer warnings on the coffee cups they sell.
An online commenter said: "I think the U.S. court is exaggerating the heath risk of coffee".
Though raw coffee beans themselves are safe, some studies have hinted that roasting them to reach the bold, rich flavors we enjoy in our morning cups may come at a cost.
Joshua Bloom, a partner at Meyers Nave Riback Silver & Wilson in Oakland, said the case and its ultimate disposition are significant both in the scope of the number of businesses and coffee drinkers that could be affected and the potential for shaping Prop 65 enforcement in the area of prepared foods. "I love the taste, I love the ritual, I love the high, the energy, and I think I'm addicted to it".
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