A California federal court has again denied certification in a putative consumer class action challenging Yakult USA’s probiotic yogurt product for allegedly false digestive-health claims. Torrent v. Yakult USA, Inc., No. 15-0124 (C.D. Cal., S. Div., order entered March 7, 2016). Additional information about the previous denial of certification appears in Issue 589 of this Update.

In its prior denial, the court found the plaintiff was unlikely to purchase the product again, thus he lacked standing to pursue an injunction. Following this ruling, the plaintiff purchased Yakult at a store, then refiled his motion for class certification along with a sworn declaration that “I intend to buy Yakult in California in the future.” The court found the refiled motion to be “an effort to manufacture standing in direct response to this Court’s prior ruling.” Allowing the plaintiff “to seek injunctive relief based on his recently-expressed intention to purchase Yakult in the future would permit him to fundamentally alter his theory of the case, and would allow him to relitigate issues that this Court has already ruled on.” Accordingly, the court denied the motion for certification.


Issue 597

About The Author

For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.