So-called "popcorn lung" victim dies the day before jury award in his favor
Ronald Kuiper, 69, spent much of his adult life working with the ingredients that create "butter flavor" in popcorn. He died of lung and heart failure, with less than 30 percent breathing capacity, as a result. The following day, the jury returned a verdict in his favor, against the producer of the chemical flavoring, for $7.5 million dollars. Kuiper had been unable to attend the trial in which his attorneys claimed he developed bronchiolitis obliterans because of the manufacturer's failure to properly warn him of the risks and to protect him from exposure to the deadly chemicals.
Three companies, in addition to the defendant Givaudan Flavors Corp. of Ohio, make the flavoring, International Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. of New York, Flavors of North America, Inc. of Illinois, and Sensient Flavors, Inc. of Indiana. The latter three companies compromised Kuiper's claims against them.