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Eatz “Smoked” Almonds Added Smoke Flavor Multi-State Class Action

Eatz brand Smoked Almonds come in a red-toned package. They are made by, and sold in, Family Dollar Stores, Inc. But are the almonds really “smoked”? The complaint for this class action claims that the flavoring comes not from actual smoking but from added smoke flavor, and that this does not meet the flavor labeling requirements of the Code of Federal Regulations.

The class for this action is residents of Illinois, Texas, Utah, New Mexico, Indiana, West Virginia, and North Carolina who bought the product during the applicable statutes of limitations.

Smoking was a process initially used to preserve protein foods, such as meats, cheeses, almonds, and fish. It was used less often after the introduction of chemical preservatives, but the complaint alleges that “the last two decades have seen a resurgence in smoked foods, as consumers embrace foods made without advanced chemistry and synthetic ingredients.”

The complaint refers to “research by Mintel” to assert that consumers prefer to have the flavors of foods come from the characterizing ingredient or natural processes. In flavorings, consumers prefer “the real thing.”

The front label of a food product is supposed to disclose the source of its characterizing flavor, if it’s not primarily from the characterizing ingredient. The complaint points to the example of strawberry shortcake, where strawberries are the characterizing ingredient. If it contains some natural flavor from strawberries, together with either no real strawberries or not enough strawberries to characterize the food, the complaint claims, the front label must acknowledge this flavoring, by saying, for example, “natural strawberry flavored shortcake” or “strawberry flavored shortcake.”

Also, according to the complaint, “Where a food’s flavor does not come exclusively from a characterizing ingredient or processing method, but contains natural flavor derived from that ingredient or processing method, this must be disclosed to consumers on the front label, in addition to on the ingredient list.”

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given makers warnings about foods with added smoke flavor, saying, “If these smoke ingredients [natural smoke flavor] are added flavors, they should be declared in accordance with 21 CFR 101.22[,]” that is, on the front of the label.

The front label for the Eatz Smoked Almonds only says “Smoked Almonds.” It says nothing about added smoke flavor. However, the ingredient panel lists “Natural Smoke Flavor.”

The complaint asserts, “Through listing ‘Natural Smoke Flavor’ on the ingredient list, the Product tacitly admits that even if it has undergone smoking, it was not smoked enough to sufficiently impart a characterizing smoke flavor.”

The complaint alleges that without a qualifier like “Smoke Flavored Almonds,” the front label misleads customers by giving them the impression that all of the smoke flavor came from the process of smoking. It claims that added smoke flavor cannot offer the full range of flavor compounds that come from actual smoking.

The complaint alleges fraud, negligent misrepresentation, and breaches of warranties, among other things.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer, News

Most Recent Case Event

Eatz “Smoked” Almonds Added Smoke Flavor Multi-State Complaint

July 5, 2021

Eatz brand Smoked Almonds come in a red-toned package. They are made by, and sold in, Family Dollar Stores, Inc. But are the almonds really “smoked”? The complaint for this class action claims that the flavoring comes not from actual smoking but from added smoke flavor, and that this does not meet the flavor labeling requirements of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Eatz “Smoked” Almonds Added Smoke Flavor Multi-State Complaint

Case Event History

Eatz “Smoked” Almonds Added Smoke Flavor Multi-State Complaint

July 5, 2021

Eatz brand Smoked Almonds come in a red-toned package. They are made by, and sold in, Family Dollar Stores, Inc. But are the almonds really “smoked”? The complaint for this class action claims that the flavoring comes not from actual smoking but from added smoke flavor, and that this does not meet the flavor labeling requirements of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Eatz “Smoked” Almonds Added Smoke Flavor Multi-State Complaint
Tags: "Smoked" Food Is Only Smoke-Flavored, Deceptive Advertising, Deceptive Labels