Californians can’t get Dunkin’ Donuts coffee online

by Walter Olson on October 31, 2011

“When consumers in California visit the Dunkin’ Donuts website hoping to order a bag of their favorite java, they are met with the following message: ‘Important Notice: We are temporarily suspending the shipment of orders to California while we work to comply with Proposition 65 with the State of California. We apologize for any inconvenience.'” Acrylamide, a compound naturally present in many roasted or cooked foods, is among the hundreds of substances that must be warned against under Prop 65, which has led, as we noted in May, to a lawsuit against more than 40 coffee companies. [TechNewsWorld] Author Vivian Wagner quotes me:

“The law empowers private litigants to enforce its terms without having to show that any consumer has been exposed to any material or substantial risk, let alone harmed,” Walter Olson, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, told the E-Commerce Times. “As a result, entrepreneurial law firms roam the state identifying new, often far-fetched, unwarned-of risks and extracting cash settlements along with promises to warn from hapless defendants.”

{ 5 comments }

1 mojo 10.31.11 at 10:55 am

Yes, another brilliant result of the initiative process.

2 John Burgess 10.31.11 at 11:06 am

Really, companies should just stop doing business in California until it changes its anti-business laws. Two or three years without most consumer products should lead even the donkeys in that state to some level of awareness.

I realize that CA is a huge market for almost everything. But bottom line losses in the short term must be better than guaranteed mega-losses in the long term.

3 DensityDuck 10.31.11 at 5:10 pm

Let’s hope these people don’t get ahold of the ACSH’s Holiday Dinner Menu: http://www.acsh.org/publications/pubID.1743/pub_detail.asp

They could make it illegal for Californians to eat food!

4 D 10.31.11 at 6:12 pm

mojo, do you advocate that the initiative process be abrogated? Are initiatives worse than what the legislatures come up with? Possibly you could propose a method whereby the only bills/initiatives introduced are far-sighted, brilliant, and agreed upon by everyone. In the meantime I’ve been training my pigs to perform aerial maneuvers. It is going better than teaching my children to consider the consequences before they act.

5 mojo 11.01.11 at 11:27 am

D: no.

I advocate voting “no” on all initiatives, unless presented with solid and compelling reasons for sticking things into the already heavily overburdened CA constitution.

And, for the record, I haven’t voted “yes” on a proposition in the last 20 years.

Comments on this entry are closed.