The National Consumers League has filed a consumer fraud action in a Washington, D.C. court against Nestlé HealthCare Nutrition, Inc., alleging that the company falsely advertises its BOOST Kid Essentials® drinks as products that can strengthen children’s immune systems and aid their digestive systems. The Nat’l Consumers League v. Nestlé HealthCare Nutrition, Inc., No. 5772-10 (D.C. Super. Ct., filed July 30, 2010).

Bringing the action on behalf of the D.C. general public, the nonprofit organization alleges one count of violating the D.C. Consumer Protection Procedures Act and seeks declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as “treble damages or statutory damages in the amount of $1,500 per violation, whichever is greater,” costs and attorney’s fees. The league relies on the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC’s) complaint against the company to assert that clinical studies do not support the promotional health-related representations. Additional details about the FTC’s settlement of its complaint and Nestlé’s agreement to refrain from making health-related claims without reliable scientific evidence appear in Issue 356 of this Update.

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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.