Leeman v. Adams Extract & Spice, LLC

Posted: 02/05/2014  browse the case archive

In the enforcement action Leeman v. Adams Extract & Spice, LLC, the parties executed an agreement on February 5, 2014.  In this matter, whistleblower Whitney R. Leeman, Ph.D., alleged that defendant Adams Extract & Spice, LLC (“Adams”) sold food extracts, flavors, and/or colorings containing 4-methylimidazole (4-MEI) in the State of California without providing the requisite health hazard warnings. 

As part of the settlement, Adams agreed not to sell the food extract, flavoring, and/or covering in California after the San Francisco Superior Court approves the Consent Judgment, unless the product contains no more than 300 parts per million of 4-MEI when analyzed using U.S. Environmental Protection Agency testing methodology 8321A.  Should Adams provide written certification by January 1, 2015, and continuing into the future, that ninety-five percent of the product sold in California contains no more than 1 part per million of 4-MEI, Leeman agreed to waive a portion of the civil fine that would otherwise be applied. 

The Consent Judgment requires a total settlement payment of $92,500, divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, and compensation to citizen enforcer Leeman and her counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.

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