A jury returned a $7.2 million verdict in favor of Wayne Watson against Gilster-Mary Lee Corp., The Kroger Co. and Dillon Companies Inc., in a “popcorn lung” lawsuit. The Plaintiff developed respiratory problems in 2007 known as “popcorn lung.” Testimony at trial indicated Watson, a Denver native, ate about two bags of popcorn every day for ten years. He developed the rare disease, known as “popcorn lung,” from inhaling the artificial butter smell of the microwave popcorn.
Popcorn lung is usually found in plant workers exposed to high levels of diacetyl, an artificial flavoring used to give popcorn that buttery taste. The lawsuit was against the popcorn maker and Kroger, the supermarket that sold it, claiming the companies never warned consumers that diacetyl – also recently linked to Alzheimer’s–was dangerous.
Defense attorneys argued that Watson’s health problems stemmed from working with carpet-cleaning chemicals for years. Many manufacturers no longer use the diacetyl in microwave popcorn. Watson previously settled claims against the flavor developer FONA International Inc., formerly Flavors of North America Inc., according to Associated Press.
Kenneth B. McClain, with the Humphrey, Farringdon, McClain law firm located in Independence, Mo., represented the Plaintiff. He did a very good job in this most significant case.
Source: ABC News
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