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You want killer fries with that?

Go ahead and slap the warning on them. No one is going to stop eating french fries.

Potato chips and french fries could soon come with a warning label in California if the state’s top attorney prevails in a lawsuit filed Friday against nine fast food chains and snack-food makers.

Attorney General Bill Lockyer asked for a court order requiring McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Frito Lay and other companies to warn consumers that their fries and chips may contain acrylamide, a chemical the state says causes cancer.

At least one of the companies disputes that, saying there is no evidence the substance is carcinogenic. “In taking this action, I am not telling people to stop eating potato chips or french fries,” Lockyer said. “I know from personal experience that, while these snacks may not be a necessary part of a healthy diet, they sure taste good.”

But consumers should have the information needed to make informed decisions about their food, he said. Acrylamide, a byproduct of chemicals and high heat, has been found at low levels in several foods. The lawsuit focuses on french fries and chips because they have more acrylamide than other foods, according to the Attorney General’s Office.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding