Despite its long list of health benefits, coffee in California may soon come with a consumer warning about cancer.
A lawsuit first filed by the Council for Education and Research on Toxics in 2010 seeks to require coffee sellers, including Starbucks, BP, Gloria Jean’s and 7-Eleven, to warn customers about the ingestion of acrylamide, a possibly cancer-causing chemical that’s produced when coffee beans are roasted.
Under California’s Proposition 65, businesses are required to notify customers if their products contain any of 65 chemicals, including acrylamide, that are linked with cancer, birth defects or other reproductive issues. In failing to post carcinogen warnings, the lawsuit alleges, the coffee shops are in violation of this policy.
So far, 13 defendants, including 7-Eleven, have settled and agreed to post warnings, CNN reports. Nine additional defendants will take part in a private mediation on Feb. 8. If they cannot reach a settlement, a judge will likely come to a decision later this year, according to CNN.