2019 CPEO Brownfields List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Tue, 4 Jun 2019 19:49:44 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-brownfields
Subject: [CPEO-BIF] Nestlé TCE contamination, Ripon, California
Harder seeks answers to TCE pollution

Manteca Bulletin (CA)
June 4, 2019

Congressman Josh Harder is seeking answers from state officials as to whether the City of Ripon’s drinking water is safe and just how effective Nestle remediation efforts have been.

The now defunct Nestlé Food Corporation plant that operated southwest of the Main Street and Highway 99 interchange on Industrial Avenue produced decaffeinated coffee until it closed in 1994.  The decaffeination process involved a closed loop system where solvents were distilled and recycled. Beginning in 1957, trichloroethylene (TCE) — a chemical now known to cause cancer — was used to extract caffeine. The company switched from TCE to methylene chloride (MC) in 1970. Nestle used MC in the process until 1986.

The City of Ripon recently shut down a municipal drinking water well after elevated levels of TCE-related chemicals were detected. Residents have expressed concern that a sudden increase in childhood cancers in Ripon may be connected to the Nestle contamination.


For the entire article, see


Lenny Siegel
Executive Director
Center for Public Environmental Oversight
a project of the Pacific Studies Center
P.O. Box 998, Mountain View, CA 94042
Voice/Fax: 650/961-8918 

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