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33 Plaintiffs Dismissed In 'Popcorn Lung' Suits

Mon, 03/22/2010 - 5:03am

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — Eleven plaintiffs remain in a round of lawsuits against a microwave popcorn packaging plant in Jasper.

Originally, 44 plaintiffs were part of lawsuits filed in 2006 against the makers of butter flavorings used at the Jasper Popcorn Co. plant, which has operated as Gilster Mary Lee Corp. since 1999.

The Joplin Globe reports that the flavorings contain diacetyl, which the lawsuits claim can cause a potentially fatal lung disease.

Thirty-three of the lawsuits were dismissed because workers could not show that ailments they may have contracted were related to work at the plant or living near it.

Those plaintiffs and the 11 that remain were not part of an earlier round of lawsuits that brought verdicts or settlements in favor of 43 workers at the plant in the 1990s.

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Information from: The Joplin Globe, http://www.joplinglobe.com

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