Leeman v. Peerless Coffee Company, Inc.

Posted: 07/20/2017  browse the case archive

The parties involved in the case Leeman v. Starbuck Corporation, et al. executed a Consent Judgment on July 20, 2017.  In this matter, citizen enforcer Whitney R. Leeman, Ph.D. alleged that Peerless Coffee Company, Inc. (“Peerless”) sold dried lapsang souchong teas containing the heavy metal lead in the State of California without providing the requisite health hazard warnings.  

As part of the agreement, Peerless agreed not to sell any dried lapsang souchong teas in California after the San Francisco County Superior Court approves the Judgment, unless the tea is virtually free of lead when analyzed using state or federally approved testing methodologies OR has Proposition 65 warnings provided.

The Consent Judgment required settlement payments of up to $22,000, divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, and compensation to whistleblower Leeman and his counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.   

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