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Specialty Coffee Assoc. Addresses 65 Ruling

SCA Responds to California’s Proposition 65 Ruling

CoffeeNetwork (New York) – In light of the recent ruling related to California’s Proposition 65 that coffee will likely need to carry warning labels that suggest that certain chemicals in roasted coffee may cause cancer, the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) has issued a response:

The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) is disappointed to learn of a recent ruling in a California court that may require coffee to carry a cancer warning label.

The preponderance of scientific evidence points to coffee consumption as part of a healthy lifestyle, and there is no evidence that coffee is carcinogenic. In fact, the bulk of recent independent studies suggest that coffee may have some role in preventing certain cancers.

For this reason, the American Institute for Cancer Research has recommended that coffee not carry a cancer warning, and the World Health Organization recently stated that there is no reason to consider coffee carcinogenic.

This decision will have a negative effect on consumers who will be confused by cancer labels on a beverage that is known to be part of a healthy diet and on small coffee businesses who will need to navigate the legal complexities of this decision. The SCA is committed to providing support and information on this topic to our members in the coming weeks.

The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICA) has come down decisively on the issue, stating, “Coffee doesn’t need to carry a cancer warning, scientists say it protects from cancer.”

This represents the view of scientists, including those from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health who call the lawsuit “profoundly misguided”.

Finally, on this topic, the National Coffee Association, our respected partner in coffee and health science, has prepared a number of great resources on Proposition 65 link and on acrylamide which we enthusiastically point our members to.

Alexis Rubinstein