Food companies not wanting to fend off lawsuits need to be a bit better about their marketing, it seems! After the maker of Nutella settled a lawsuit over its claims that the spread was "a healthy and nutritious part of a balanced breakfast" now we get word of another suit in the same vein. On behalf of all of us, Annie Lam of Daly City California has sued General Mills because—gasp!—the company's Fruit Roll-Ups and Fruit By The Foot products are not actually "made with real fruit." Or, rather, not the fruit you think they are made with.
She's not the first to get litigious over Fruit Roll-Up's authenticity, but so far it seems she may have a better shot at winning. Lam's class-action case argues that Fruit Roll-Ups packaging is not telling the whole truth. For an example her lawyer's point out that the "naturally flavored" Strawberry Sensation Fruit Roll-Ups are made with "pears from concentrate" as well as corn syrup, dried corn syrup, sugar and partially hydrogenated cottonseed oil...but not strawberry.
"The court agrees with Lam," U.S. District Judge Samuel Conti wrote in a decision that let the case proceed. "The fruit snacks' ingredients list cannot be used to correct the message that reasonable consumers may take from the rest of the packaging: that the fruit snacks are made with a particular type and quantity of fruit."
Fun! The case still has to work its way through the system, but we can't wait to see the way marketers are now going to try and dance around this issue. Perhaps: Fruit Roll-Ups, made with real fruit,*
*Just not necessarily the fruit you think.