Tag Archives juice

A New York federal court has dismissed some allegations in a lawsuit alleging Whole Foods Market Group Inc. and Freshbev LLC mislabeled juice products but will allow three claims to proceed. Campbell v. Freshbev LLC, No. 16-7119 (E.D.N.Y., entered July 2, 2018). The plaintiff alleged that the companies mislabeled the juices as unpasteurized, cold-pressed and fresh and that Ripe Craft Juice 12.2 Northeast Blend Cranberry Apple contained more apple juice than cranberry in the blend. The court dismissed the allegation that the "cold-pressed" labels were misleading because the juices are subjected to high-pressure processing, finding that a "reasonable consumer would not mistake the cold-pressed claim to be a claim that pressure was never applied to the juice products." The court permitted three state-law claims related to the "fresh" labels, the "unpasteurized" label on cranberry juice, and the "Cranberry Apple" juice ingredients to continue but dismissed claims for injunctive relief and fraud.

A federal court has denied a motion to reconsider a denial of class certification in a lawsuit alleging that Tropicana Products Inc. mislabeled its orange juice as “natural.” In re Tropicana Orange Juice Mktg. & Sales Practices Litig., No. 11-7382 (D.N.J., entered May 24, 2018). The plaintiffs argued that the court misconstrued its theory of liability, gave more weight to the defendant’s expert opinions, overlooked evidence of class-wide injury and erred in its ascertainability analysis. The court ruled that because the plaintiffs “exhaustively alleged” that the juice contained added flavoring, whether the product conforms to the standard of identity for pasteurized orange juice "lies at the heart of Plaintiff’s theory of liability as articulated by Plaintiffs’ own words.” Finding the claims unsupported by the pleadings, the court found no cause for reconsideration. The court also pointed to an expert opinion showing variation in the reasoning behind consumer decisions to buy the…

A New York federal court has dismissed most of the claims in a cold-pressed juice putative class action but will allow to proceed allegations related to heat-processing of citrus juices. Davis v. Hain Celestial Grp., Inc., No. 17-5191 (E.D.N.Y., entered April 3, 2018). The court dismissed the complaint’s allegations involving high-pressure processing, finding that “the label taken as a whole makes clear that the juice was subjected to pressure for food safety purposes.” Even if consumers “are not generally aware of non-thermal processing methods, the Cold-Pressed Line labels clearly indicate that such methods exist,” the court held. “'Cold pressed' does not cease to be a truthful moniker for the juice simply because there were subsequent steps in the juice’s production process.” The court declined to dismiss the plaintiff’s allegations that all citrus juices—including lemon juice, which appears in all of the contested products—must be heat-processed. If true, the court found, the…

A New Jersey federal court has denied class certification to a group of consumers alleging that Tropicana Pure Premium orange juice was mislabeled and misbranded because the maker adds natural flavoring to the product in violation of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's standard of identity for pasteurized orange juice. In re Tropicana Orange Juice Mktg. & Sales Practices Litig., No. 11-7382 (D.N.J., entered January 22, 2018). The court ruled that the plaintiffs’ unjust enrichment, express warranty and New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act claims required individualized proof; thus, individual issues predominated over those of the class. In addition, the plaintiffs were unable to demonstrate that the proposed class was ascertainable—in particular, the court found, it was unclear whether any of the “dozens, if not hundreds of retailers” could confirm with certainty whether they possessed consumer data for the class period. If a consumer purchased the juice from a retailer that…

A consumer has filed a projected class action alleging Ocean Spray Cranberries’ CranGrape and CranApple juice products contain artificial flavorings despite bearing “No High Fructose Corn Syrup, Artificial Colors or Flavors" labels. Hilsley v. Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc., No. 17-2335 (S.D. Cal., removed to federal court November 16, 2017). Originally filed in San Diego County, the complaint alleges that CranApple contains synthetic dl-malic acid made from petrochemicals but lists “malic acid”—a generic term that can be used to describe a "naturally occurring compound"—on the label. The plaintiff further alleges that CranGrape contains fumaric acid, also synthesized from petrochemicals, and that both fumaric and malic acid are used to enhance flavor. Claiming violations of California’s consumer-protection statutes as well as breach of warranties, the plaintiff seeks class certification, disgorgement, restitution, punitive damages, injunctive relief, corrective advertising and attorney’s fees.

Forager Project faces a putative class action alleging that its "cold-pressed" juices undergo a second, high-pressure processing, allegedly amounting to misrepresentation on the product labeling. Berger v. Forager Project, LLC, No. 17-6302 (E.D.N.Y., filed October 28, 2017) The plaintiff asserts that after the juices are cold-pressed and bottled, Forager subjects the bottles to high-pressure treatment that reduces “the biological, enzymatic and bacterial activity which existed after cold-pressing to an extent that is material to reasonable consumers.” In addition, the plaintiff alleges that Forager does not disclose this second step on its labeling, misleading consumers who want cold-pressed juice because of its “greater integrity in composition than if it were made through a centrifugal machine.” The complaint further argues that the name “Forager Project” contributes to consumer deception because “[f]oraging has traditionally referred to the gathering of food from the natural, undisturbed environment.” Claiming violations of New York consumer-protection law, false advertising,…

Green Crush, a retailer selling juice, smoothie and aguas frescas beverages, has filed a lawsuit alleging that a former Green Crush manager and a former contractor engaged in corporate espionage, asserting that they used the chain’s proprietary information and infringed its trademarks and trade dress to start a competing company. Green Crush, LLC v. Paradise Splash 1, Inc., No. 17-1856 (C.D. Cal., filed October 23, 2017). The complaint alleges that the manager frequently asked senior Green Crush employees about “distribution operations, specific equipment, detailed drink ingredients, the design, placement, setting and layout of drink containers and cups, and the process and recipes used” before leaving to start a competing juice store. Further, Green Crush argues, the manager and contractor solicited Green Crush employees to work for them; allegedly, some of those employees asked “if the store under construction was a [Green Crush] store because it looked just like one.” Seeking…

A consumer has filed a putative class action alleging the Hain Celestial Group's “ColdPressed” juice products are mislabeled because a third-party company, which manufactures some of the product, heats the juice during high-pressure processing, causing a “compositional change." Davis v. Hain Celestial Grp., No. 17- 5191 (E.D.N.Y., filed September 3, 2017). The complaint challenges two product lines, BluePrint ColdPressed Juice and BluePrint Organic fruit drinks, which the plaintiff claims are represented as “raw and organic” and “never heated.” The plaintiff asserts that high-pressure processing heats the juice, causing changes in the “microbial, enzymatic and bacterial activity and intact cellular structures,” resulting in the products no longer being raw or fresh. Claiming violations of New York consumer protection laws along with fraudulent misrepresentation, implied warranty of merchantability and unjust enrichment, the plaintiff seeks class certification, injunctive relief, damages and attorney’s fees.

A consumer has filed a putative class action against PepsiCo alleging that Naked Juice products are mislabeled as “cold pressed” because they also undergo high-pressure processing, “render[ing] the composition of the final product distinct from the intermediate, cold pressed product.” Davis v. PepsiCo, No. 17-4551 (E.D.N.Y., filed August 2, 2017). The complaint alleges that Naked Juice’s “Naked Pressed” product line, which includes nine fruit and vegetable juice blends, are cold pressed but then subjected to high hydraulic pressure, causing the temperature of the juice to rise, degrading “enzymatic, biological and cellular activity” and diminishing overall nutrient content. The plaintiff also asserts that a food product name is intended to refer to a final product, not the product that exists at an “intermediate” stage of manufacturing. Claiming violations of New York consumer-protection laws, fraudulent misrepresentation, implied warranty of merchantability and unjust enrichment, the plaintiff seeks class certification, injunctive relief, damages and attorney’s fees.  

World Waters, maker of WTRMLN WTR, faces a proposed class action alleging its product labeling misleads consumers into believing that the products contain mostly watermelon juice and that the beverages are “cold-pressed” rather than heat-pasteurized. Pizzirusso v. World Waters, No. 17-4071 (E.D.N.Y., filed July 8, 2017). The plaintiff first asserts that World Water “overstates” the amount of watermelon in the mixed-fruit juice beverages. The complaint further alleges that although World Waters uses “Cold Pressed” and “Cold Pressured” to describe its products and claims on its website that the beverages are not pasteurized, the cold-pressure process heats the juices in a manner comparable to pasteurization; in addition, similar products produced by competitors apparently bear the term “High Pressure Processed.” Alleging violations of New York consumer protection laws, breach of warranty, unjust enrichment and fraud, the plaintiff seeks class certification, injunctive relief, damages and attorney’s fees.   Issue 641

Close