Kettle Brand Potato Chips Contain Synthetic Ingredients, Class Action Says

The maker of Kettle brand potato chips is once again under fire over allegations its potato chips are falsely labeled as being “Made with Natural Ingredients” and containing “No Preservatives”.

Plaintiff Denise Mason filed the false advertising class action lawsuit against Diamond Foods in New York federal court this week, claiming its Kettle brand potato chips are falsely labeled as being made with natural ingredients and without preservatives, when in fact they contain the synthetic preservative citric acid.

Consumers have become increasingly conscious in purchasing less processed foods free of additives and are willing to pay more for products that are made with natural ingredients and are free of preservatives. The Kettle brand potato chips class action lawsuit says that Diamond Foods has opted to mislead consumers as to the true nature of their products in order to capitalize on this consumer health trend.

Specifically, the Kettle brand potato chips products at issue in this class action lawsuit include:

  • Organic Sea Salt & Vinegar Potato Chips
  • Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper Krinkle Cut Potato Chips
  • Backyard Barbeque Potato Chips
  • Chili Lime Potato Chips
  • Buffalo Bleu Krinkle Cut Potato Chips
  • Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chips
  • Pepperoncini Potato Chips
  • Tropical Salsa Potato Chips
  • Fiery Thai Potato Chips
  • Country Style Barbeque Potato Chips
  • Honey Dijon Potato Chips
  • New York Cheddar Potato Chips

Mason claims that the “No Preservatives” labeling deceives consumers into believing that they are receiving healthier, preservative-free potato chips. Similarly, the “Made with Natural Ingredients” representations are misleading because the Kettle brand potato chips reportedly contain the preservative citric acid – a synthetic compound produced from certain strands of the black mold fungus Aspergillus niger, which is mass produced – as well as the chemical solvent sulfuric acid.

According to the Kettle brand potato chips class action lawsuit, Mason claims she relied on Diamond Foods’ labeling and had she and other consumers known the truth, they would not have purchased the Kettle brand potato chips.

Additionally, the complaint notes that “consumers cannot discover the true nature of the Products from reading the label” and that “discovery of the true nature of the content of the Products requires knowledge of chemistry that is not available to the average reasonable consumer.”

This is not the first time Diamond Foods has been accused of falsely marketing Kettle brand potato chips. In 2015, the company settled a similar class action lawsuit alleging its Kettle brand potato chips were falsely labeled as being “natural” or “preservative-free”.

In bringing this false advertising class action lawsuit, Mason is seeking to represent a nationwide Class of consumers who purchased the Kettle brand potato chip products, along with a New York subclass. She is asking for an order requiring “proper, complete, and accurate labeling of the Products,” as well as monetary and punitive damages.

Mason is represented by Michael J. Gabrielli of Gabrielli Levitt LLP

The Kettle Brand Potato Chips False Advertising Class Action Lawsuit is Denise Mason v. Diamond Foods LLC d/b/a Kettle Foods Inc., Case No. 1:18-cv-06423-GHW, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Nestlé Under Fire Over Misleading “No GMO Ingredients” Labeling

Nestlé is facing a proposed class action lawsuit alleging the company falsely labels certain products as containing “No GMO Ingredients”, when the in fact reportedly do.

Plaintiff Jennifer Latiff filed the Nestlé GMO class action lawsuit in California federal court last Friday. Latiff says that she purchased Nestlé products, specifically Lean Cuisine Marketplace frozen dinners and Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss creamer with the No GMO ingredients seal.

Many consumers are sensitive to genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, in their food and want to avoid them for a variety of reasons, including GMOs’ possible negative impact on the environment. As a result, many consumers, like Latiff, try to purchase products that are not derived from GMOs.

In an attempt to meet consumers’ demand for non-GMO products, an industry of independent, third-party validation companies has developed. These independent companies review the ingredients in products to assure that the products either do not contain GMOs, or do not come from animals fed GMO food. Thus, obtaining the approval from an independent third party allows companies to obtain an advantage in the market place over their competitors, in order to sell more products and charge higher prices.

However, according the Nestlé GMO class action lawsuit, Nestlé falsely represents to consumers that these and other products it sells have been certified by an independent third party as not containing GMO ingredients by affixing a No GMO Ingredients seal on the products. Unfortunately, the 18-page complaint contends that the No GMO Ingredients seal is not from a neutral third party, but instead the work of Nestlé itself attempting to capitalize on the consumer demand for non-GMO products.

“Looking to profit off consumer desire for independently validated products, Defendant has created a deceptive No GMO IngredientsTM seal of approval label that mimics the Non-GMO Project seal,” the Nestlé GMO class action lawsuit states.

Moreover, the lawsuit alleges that the ingredients in certain Nestlé products are in fact derived from GMOS. For example, Nestlé products that contain dairy come from cows fed GMO grains – a violation of the Non-GMO Project standard, which does not allow for its seal of approval to be placed on dairy based products that could be from animals fed GMO feed.

As a result of this alleged deceptive labeling practice, consumers paid significantly more to purchase a non-GMO product to avoid possible health and environmental risks associated with GMO products. In bringing this proposed class action lawsuit, Latiff is hoping to end Nestlé’s alleged false representations and help consumers recover their money spent. She is seeking to represent a nationwide Class of consumers who purchased any of Nestlé’s products bearing the No GMO Ingredients seal label.

Latiff is represented by Michael R. Reese and George V. Granade of Reese LLP and Daniel L. Warshaw and Bobby Pouya of Pearson Simon & Warshaw LLP.

The Nestlé “No GMO” Labeling Class Action Lawsuit is Jennifer Latiff v. Nestlé USA Inc., Case No. 2:18-cv-06503, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Western Division.

Claim Up To $15 Hansen’s & Hubert’s Natural Beverages Class Action Settlement

Who is a Class Member

The Natural Beverages class action settlement includes: (1) all California consumers who purchased any of 21 Hansen’s juice products (sold in bottles and boxes) or any of four Hansen’s Smoothie Nectar products between June 19, 2010 and June 12, 2015, and (2) all California consumers who purchased any of 12 Hubert’s lemonade or lemonade-tea products between June 19, 2010 and January 1, 2014.”

If you don’t qualify for this settlement, check out our database of other class action settlements you may be eligible for.

Settlement Amount

  • $3,000,000.00

Estimated Award

  • Up to $15.00

Class members who submit valid claims without proof of purchase can receive up to $5.00. Class members who submit a valid claim with proof of purchase can receive up to $15.00. You will need to select if you want to receive your payouts via paper check, e-check, or e-gift card.

Proof of Purchase

  • N/A; however if you DO submit proof of purchase, your payout will likely be higher.

Claim Form

  • class action lawsuits

Hansen’s & Hubert’s Natural Beverages Settlement Notes

  • Krinsk v. Monster Beverage Corporation
  • Case No. 37-2014-00020192-CU-BT-CTL
  • Pending in the Superior Court for the State of California, County of San Diego

In March 2015, a class action lawsuit was brought against Monster Beverage Corporation over allegations that certain Hansen’s and Hubert’s drinks were labeled as being “natural” even though they reportedly contained synthetic or artificial ingredients and/or added colors.

Monster disputes the allegations and denies any liability. However, the company agreed to settle to avoid additional expenses and interference with its operations. Customers who purchased Hansen’s Natural Juices, Hansen’s Smoothie Nectars, Hubert’s Lemonades or Hubert’s Half & Half Lemonade Teas in the state of California between June 19, 2010, and June 12, 2015 and who submit a valid claim form will be compensated.

Complete details about the case and settlement are provided on the Natural Beverages settlement website.

Class members who wish to object to or exclude themselves from the Telenav TCPA settlement must do so by August 16, 2018. Class members who wish to participate in the settlement must submit a claim form on or before August 28, 2018.

Important Dates

  • 10/12/18: Claim Form Deadline
  • 10/12/18: Objection or Exclusion Deadline
  • 9/14/18: Final Hearing at 9:00 am PT* (class members do not need to attend this hearing in order to receive a slice of the settlement pie).

*Settlement Class Members who wish to speak at the hearing should check to confirm that the date or time of the Hearing has not been changed.

Contact Information

  • Mail: CPT Group Inc., 50 Corporate Park, Irvine, CA 92606
  • Phone: 1-888-404-0507

Class Counsel

Settlement Website

Bai Fruit Drinks Class Action Says Beverages Aren’t All-Natural

Bai Brands LLC is facing a proposed consumer class action lawsuit challenging the beverage maker’s claims it fruit-flavored drinks are all-natural.

Plaintiff Kevin Branca filed the Bai fruit drinks class action lawsuit in California federal court last month, claiming that Bai labels its drinks, including its’ Bai Antioxidant Infusion Brasilia Blueberry, Bai Antioxidant Infusion Ipanema Pomegranate, Bai Antioxidant Infusion Malawi Mango beverages and more, as containing only natural fruits and juices when they actually contain artificial flavors.

According to the 27-page complaint, the product labeling on Bai beverage products shows fresh berries and/or fruit, implying to the consumer that the drinks consist of and are flavored with only natural juices and fruit flavors. However, all of the Bai fruit drinks contain a synthetic chemical flavoring compound known as “malic acid.” Malic acid is a chemical that makes manufactured food products taste like fresh fruit – like blueberries, mangos, or cherries, for example.

Branca contends that because the Bai fruit drinks contain malic acid, the beverage maker is required under California law and federal statutes to disclose those additional flavors on the front label. Instead, Bai chooses to mislead consumers that their fruit drinks are flavored only by natural fruit juices.

FDA regulations and California law establish that if the labeling or advertising of a food product “makes any direct or indirect representations with respect to the primary recognizable flavors by word, depiction of a fruit, or other means” then, “such flavor shall be the characterizing flavor.” Additionally, under the law, the “presence or absence of any charactering ingredient” must be in boldface print on the front display panel of the product’s package and must be of sufficient size for an average consumer to notice it.

Basically, since “Blueberry”, “Mango”, “Cherry”, and other fruits the Bai fruit drinks are named and labeled as on the front packaging, they are considered “characterizing flavors” under California and federal regulations and therefore Bai is breaking the law by not including the fact they their drinks contain an artificial flavoring ingredient on their product’s front label.

Branca says he and other consumers were duped into pay $1.99 per drink or in some cases $19.99 for a variety pack of Bai fruit drinks, believing the products to be free of artificial flavoring. Instead, the fruit drinks purchased and consumed were falsely advertised. He contends that he and other consumers would not have purchased Bai fruit drinks had they known the true nature of the ingredients.

Branca is seeking to represent a nationwide class of consumers who purchased Bai fruit drinks on or after January 2012 as well as a California subclass. Among a request for monetary damages, Branca is asking the court to order Bai Brands to re-label all existing Bai drinks and conduct a corrective advertising campaign to inform consumers about the true nature of ingredients of their Bai fruit drinks.

Branca is represented by Ronald A. Marron and Michael T. Houchin of Law Offices of Ronald A. Marron.

The Bai Fruit Drinks False Advertising Class Action Lawsuit is Branca v. Bai Brands LLC, Case No. 3:18-cv-00757-BEN-KSC, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California.