South Korea’s health authorities are scrutinising the risk of an allegedly cancer-causing chemical in coffee, following a Los Angeles judge’s decision to require Starbucks and other coffee companies in California to put cancer warnings on their products.
As highlighted by C&CI earlier this month, a judge in Los Angeles has ruled that Starbucks and many other coffee companies failed to warn customers about acrylamide, which is produced during the roasting process.
The companies were sued by California-based Council for Education and Research on Toxics. It argued that acrylamide is carcinogenic under state law and should therefore be sold with a warning. Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle said the companies “had failed to prove that consumption of coffee confers a benefit to human health.” They have until 10 April to appeal the decision.
Quoting the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, Korea Times said the ministry plans to research how much of the chemical consumers have been exposed to considering soaring coffee consumption in the country.
“Our findings will be announced as early as the end of this year,” a ministry official told the Korea Times. So far, the ministry has said the level of acrylamide from coffee is not harmful to people.