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Food and Beverage News and Trends

Vermont AG defends the state’s GMO statute. On August 8, the Vermont attorney general filed a motion to dismiss a case brought by food trade groups against the state’s newly enacted statute requiring GMO foods be...more

Food Litigation Newsletter - August 2014 #2

In This Issue: - Recent Significant Rulings ..Court Dismisses Some of Plaintiff’s Claims In Pretzel Class Action ..Courts Increasingly Rely on FDA Notice to Stay or Dismiss ECJ Claims ..Court Dismisses...more

Lanham Act Claims Are Not Precluded by Compliance with the FDCA

In POM Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co., decided last month, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed that companies can bring unfair competition actions under the Lanham Act even when their competitors have complied with the Federal...more

Class Action Suit Against Sunflower Seed Manufacturer Dismissed as Implausible

In a recent food mislabeling case, Judge Manuel Real of the Central District of California dismissed a proposed class action lawsuit finding the plaintiffs’ claims to be implausible as a matter of law. Last year, Judge Real...more

Alabama Supreme Court Reaffirms That Plaintiffs Who Use Generic Drugs Can Recover From Brand-Name Manufacturers

On August 15, 2014, the Alabama Supreme Court held for the second time in Wyeth v. Weeks, No. 1101397 (Ala. 2014) that a plaintiff who took only the generic version of the heartburn medication Reglan could nevertheless...more

Class Certified in Homeopathic Products Case

The plaintiffs’ theory of harm drove a recent decision from the Central District of California certifying a nationwide class of purchasers of ten homeopathic products. Allen v. Hyland’s Inc., Case No. 12-01150 (C.D. Cal. Aug....more

Food Litigation Newsletter - August 2014

In This Issue: - Recent Significant Rulings ..Court Dismisses Most of plaintiff’s Claims Based on Regulatory Violations ..Court Dismisses MSG Claims in Part on Preemption Grounds ..Court Partially...more

California Federal Court Follows Third Circuit in Denying Class Certification Based on Lack of Receipts in Kitty Litter Case

Judge Conti of the Northern District of California recently issued a decision denying class certification in a consumer class action against The Clorox Company involving claims arising from the marketing and advertising of...more

California Northern District Judges Split on Sufficiency of Damages Evidence at Class Certification – Will Ninth Circuit Weigh In?...

Judges in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California are split on the sufficiency of damages evidence at the class certification stage. Jones v. ConAgra Foods, Inc, No. C 12-01633 CRB, 2014 WL 2702726...more

Two Consumer Class Actions Settle for (Mostly) Nominal Amounts Per Plaintiff

Two recent false advertising class action settlements illustrate some of the myriad ways to structure settlements, and also reflect the real risks of these lawsuits when early-stage efforts to dismiss them are...more

Labeling Laws for the Food and Beverage Industry – Unfair Competition and Mislabeled Products

In a recent unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruling, the court opened the door for private parties, including competitors, to bring false advertising and misrepresentation claims under the Lanham Act even if the product labels...more

Food Product Liability in Canada - July 2014: Five drivers of litigation and steps to minimize the risk

The things we eat and drink can harm us as well as help us, a simple fact that has long made the food and beverage products industry a target for health and safety-related litigation. In recent years, however, food products...more

Food Litigation Newsletter

In This Issue: - Recent Significant Developments and Rulings ..100% Natural Tea Case Survives Dismissal ..Claims in Chocolate Case Survive Dismissal ..Court Denies Class Certification in “All Natural”...more

Sugar and Spice and Cases on Ice: Evaporated Cane Juice Case Stayed Until FDA Issues Formal Guidelines

Last week, a California federal judge revived a putative class action accusing Amy’s Kitchen Inc. of misleading customers by labeling sugar as “evaporated cane juice” on its products. In a finding that puts the case on hold...more

A Five-Step Recipe for Managing Your “Natural” Litigation Risk

The past five years have brought a deluge of class actions challenging the way in which the word “natural” is used on food and beverage labels. Perhaps predictably so, this litigation phenomenon resulted from the convergence...more

Is the ‘Food Court’ Losing Steam? - An Update on Food and Beverage Consumer Class Actions in the Northern District of California

In 2013, we examined the state of the ‘‘Food Court’’ in the Northern District of California. While highlighting the tidal wave of food and beverage-related consumer class action litigation in the Northern District, we...more

Too Good To Be True: FTC’s Crackdown On L’Occitane’s Body Slimming Almond Extracts

L’Occitane Inc’s advertisements for its topically-applied body sculpting almond extracts seemed straightforward: “Almond Shaping Delight 3 out of 4 women saw firmer, lifted skin. This luxuriously lightweight massage gel...more

Supreme Court: FDCA Compliance Does Not Bar Lanham Act Claims

POM Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co. - In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court of the United States reversed the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruling that the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) and its...more

PREPARING FOR FIC (II)

Food supplements are classified by EU law as foodstuffs. As such, the legal provisions that apply to regular food generally apply to food supplements too. This News Alert looks at FIC rules which particularly impact food...more

Courts In 9th Circuit Continue To Split On Ascertainability: “All Natural” Class Action Dies On the Vine But Sexual Energy...

On June 13, 2014, U.S. District Judge Charles R. Breyer of the Northern District of California, issued an order denying class certification to a putative class of consumers who had purchased ConAgra food products labeled as...more

Raising “Cane” in Labeling Claims

Class action plaintiffs again allege that the labeling on Chobani’s Greek yogurt violates FDA regulations and misleads consumers, even though a federal court in California dismissed a similar labeling class action earlier...more

June 2014: Class Action Litigation Update: “Ascertainability” Emerges as Key Battleground in Class Actions Involving Low-Cost...

“Ascertainability” Emerges as Key Battleground in Class Actions Involving Low-Cost Consumer Goods. Grocery store shelves have emerged as the favored hunting ground of the plaintiff’s consumer class action bar, which has...more

Coveting Characters: Navigating FDA's Draft Guidance on Social Media

Last week the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued two long-awaited draft guidances on social media: Internet/Social Media Platforms: Correcting Independent Third-Party Misinformation About Prescription Drugs and...more

Supreme Court Opens Door to Food and Beverage Label Challenges Under Lanham Act

The United States Supreme Court paved the way on June 12 for competitors to challenge FDA-regulated food and beverage labels under the Lanham Act. The Court's opinion in POM Wonderful LLC v. The Coca-Cola Co, is the latest...more

New Updated FTC Care Labeling Rules: “Do’s and Don’ts”

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) enforces federal labeling requirements that require manufacturers, importers, sellers and distributors of certain textile and wool clothing to accurately label their products. For example,...more

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