LOS ANGELES -- California officially gave its blessing to coffee on Monday, declaring the beverage does not pose a "significant" cancer risk.
The rule, proposed a year ago by regulators, means coffee won't have to carry ominous warnings that the beverage may be bad for you.
The state took the unusual move after a Los Angeles judge found Starbucks Corp. and other companies failed to show that benefits from drinking coffee outweighed risks from a byproduct of the roasting process.
That ruling could have forced the industry to develop a process to remove the chemical from beans or grounds or warn consumers about the risk of cancer. The industry was also facing hefty civil penalties.
The chemical in question, acrylamide, is on a list that California says causes cancer, though other groups classify it as a "probable" carcinogen.
The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment concluded there was no significant risk after the World Health Organization reviewed more than 1,000 studies and found inadequate evidence that coffee causes cancer.