February 23, 2021

Another “False Labeling” Lawsuit Re: Vanilla Gets Knocked Out Of Court

DRM Food and Beverage Law Blog

In Wynn v. Topco Associates, the plaintiffs alleged that the defendant’s use of the words “Vanilla Almondmilk” on the front label of its product packaging misleads consumers into believing that the source of the vanilla flavor is entirely vanilla bean extract, as opposed to various vanilla flavorings. But on January 19, 2021 a federal court in New York dismissed the lawsuit. Applying the “reasonable consumer” standard, the court stated that “the word ‘vanilla’ . . . is likely to be interpreted by a reasonable consumer as a description of the flavor or taste rather than the ingredients.” The Topco case joins other “vanilla” cases that have been dismissed for the same reason, such as Blue Diamond Almond Breeze almondmilk (dismissed Dec. 7, 2020) and Westbrae natural unsweetened soymilk (dismissed Dec. 1, 2020). 

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