Held v. Marukai Corporation

Posted: 04/30/2015  browse the case archive

Citizen enforcer Anthony E. Held, Ph.D, P.E. and settling party Marukai Corporation (“Marukai”) entered into an out-of-court settlement agreement on April 30, 2015.  Held had alleged that Marukai sold dried hijiki-varietal seaweed containing the chemical arsenic in the State of California without providing the requisite health hazard warnings.

As part of the settlement, Marukai agreed not to sell any dried hijiki-varietal seaweed in California after April 30, 2015, unless the seaweed contains less than 5 parts per billion of arsenic when analyzed using state or federally approved testing methodologies or bear a Proposition 65 warning pursuant to section 2.3 of the agreement.  Should Marukai provide Held with written certification by September 15, 2015 that all dried hijiki-varietal seaweed sold in California qualifies as reformulated product under the agreement, Held agreed to waive a portion of the civil penalty that would otherwise be applied.

The Settlement Agreement requires settlement payments of $37,500, divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, and compensation to citizen enforcer Held and his counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.  

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