Kern’s Nectar Not “100% Natural” Because of Malic Acid, Plaintiff Argues
A consumer has filed putative class action alleging that Vilore Foods Co. Inc. misleadingly marketed Kern’s Nectar canned beverages as natural because they contain malic acid, “a synthetic chemical that is used to make manufactured food products taste like real fruit.” Gross v. Vilore Foods Co. Inc., No. 20-0894 (S.D. Cal., filed May 13, 2020). The complaint asserts that the products violate the federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act because they “contain additional flavoring ingredients that simulate and reinforce the characterizing flavor,” thus requiring Vilore “to disclose those additional flavors rather than misleadingly suggest that the Product is flavored only by the labeled natural juices.” A footnote indicates that the can packaging contained the statement as of 2017 but the “manufacturer apparently has since deleted ‘100% Natural’ on the retail can labels.” The plaintiff seeks damages and injunctions prohibiting deceptive advertising and requiring corrective advertising for alleged violations of California’s consumer-protection statutes.