Malic Acid Challenged in Laffy Taffy, Nerds
A plaintiff has alleged that Ferrara Candy Co. misleads consumers by labeling its candies as containing no artificial flavors while including malic acid as an ingredient. Gruber v. Ferrara Candy Co., No. 19-4700 (N.D. Ill., E. Div., filed July 12, 2019). The complaint echoes other putative class actions alleging that the “malic acid” listed as an ingredient is more specifically “dl-malic acid,” a synthetic food additive that can add tartness. The plaintiff alleges that he paid money for products—including Nerds, Sprees, Laffy Taffy and Everlasting Gobstoppers—that he would not have purchased if he had known that they contained artificial ingredients; further, “[w]orse than the lost money, the Plaintiff, the Class, and Sub-Class were deprived of their protected interest to choose the foods and ingredients they ingest.” For an alleged violation of Illinois consumer-protection law as well as fraud, unjust enrichment and breach of express warranty, the plaintiff seeks class certification, injunctive relief and attorney’s fees.