FDA Supports Exempting Coffee From California’s Prop 65 Warning Statement

Posted On: 9/4/2018

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WASHINGTON, DC -- FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb sent a letter on Aug. 29 to the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessments, arguing that coffee should be exempt from the state’s Proposition 65 warning label requirements for products that contain cancer-causing chemicals, despite the fact that the roasting process can form acrylamide.
 
Acrylamide can form in many foods during high-temperature cooking, such as frying, roasting and baking. Acrylamide in food forms from sugars and an amino acid that are naturally present.
 
Although acrylamide at high doses has been linked to cancer in animals, and coffee contains acrylamide, FDA said in its letter that current science indicates that consuming coffee poses no significant risk of cancer.
 
The letter states:  “… We were deeply concerned when a court recently ruled that a California law -- known as Proposition 65 -- may require coffee sold in California to be labeled with a cancer warning because of the presence of a chemical called acrylamide. Under Proposition 65, California requires that certain products contain cancer warnings if they will expose consumers to chemicals that California health authorities have identified as causing cancer. But requiring a cancer warning on coffee, based on the presence of acrylamide, would be more likely to mislead consumers than to inform them.”
 
Click here to read FDA’s letter to the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessments.