Thursday, March 11, 2004

More on Daubert and Popcorn

On 3/3/04, we posted about a pending lawsuit by workers alleging that their respiratory illnesses were caused by exposure to the chemicals used to add fake butter flavoring to microwave popcorn in the manufacturing process. We noted that public health officials were reassuring the public that microwaving the popcorn at home wouldn't hurt you.

What the health officials should have said, apparently, is that no study has yet been completed on the issue of consumer risk. According to ABC News, EPA is now investigating.
Fed. R. Evid. 702: If scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise, if (1) the testimony is based upon sufficient facts or data, (2) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and (3) the witness has applied the principles and methods reliably to the facts of the case.