Judge Who Said Coffee Needs Cancer Warning is Biased


California said a state judge who earlier this year ruled that coffee requires a cancer warning is too biased to oversee a new lawsuit that challenges the state’s proposal to exempt the beverage from the requirement.

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment this week filed a request to disqualify Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle.

Separately, a California Court of Appeals last week stayed the third phase of a trial before Berle, scheduled to start Oct. 15, on what coffee retailers and brewers would have to pay for failing to warn consumers that coffee contains a chemical known to cause cancer.

The same plaintiffs’ lawyer who sued Starbucks Corp., Target Corp., 7-Eleven Inc. and Whole Foods Market, among others, for their failure to comply with the state’s required warnings, last month sued the state after it proposed to spare coffee from the rule because the amount of acrylamide in coffee isn’t a health risk.

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