Indiana company to reduce chemical use for popcorn flavoring

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An Indianapolis-based company will reduce the amount of a chemical it uses to make flavoring for popcorn and pay a reduced fine as part of a settlement with state regulators.

Sensient Flavors LLC also agreed to drop a federal lawsuit accusing the Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration of harassment.

The Indianapolis Business Journal reports that the dispute involved Sensient's use of diacetyl to create a buttery flavor for microwave popcorn and other products. The chemical has been blamed for sickening hundreds of popcorn plant workers.

The company has said it already has taken steps to minimize exposure to the chemical. An attorney for Sensient didn't immediately return a phone call seeking comment Wednesday.

The agreement reduces a potential IOSHA fine from about $325,000 to $99,000.

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