Flor de Caña Rum Ambiguous “18” on Bottle New York Class Action

This class action brings suit against William Grant & Sons, Inc., a company that imports Flor de Caña rum to the US. Flor de Caña rum is made by Compañia Licorera de Nicaragua. The complaint for this class action points to a prominent “18” on the front label of the rum, directly above the words “Slow Aged,” and alleges that this gives consumers a misleading impression about the age of the rum.

The class for this action is all those who live in New York who bought the rum during the applicable statute of limitations.

Rum, a kind of alcoholic drink made from sugar cane, is given its flavor and quality by a number of factors. One of the most important, the complaint alleges, is its aging.

When rum is distilled, does not have the fine amber color or complex flavor that the best rums are known for. Rums are often aged before they are bottled, a process that is meant to improve the taste. The aging may be done with barrels that were originally used for whiskey or bourbon, or that are highly charred.

The barrels may have an effect on the rum in a couple of ways. First, the rum may gain an amber color from the natural tannins in the wood of the barrels. Second, the complaint claims that the “alcohol in the rum brings out the esters from the barrels, which result in an infusion of spiciness and oak tones, which become more pronounced with age.” Consumers are therefore interested in the length of time that the rum has been aged.

Makers of rums are not required to state the age of the rum, but they may not overstate it, that is, they may not say that it has been aged for longer than it has been. The complaint quotes federal regulations as saying that the statement of age must be, substantially, “___ years old,” with the number representing the “age of the youngest distilled spirits in the product.”

Technically speaking, then, the large number “18” on the front of the bottle does not qualify as a statement of age. “However,” the complaint claims, “use of the large font ‘18’ above ‘Slow Aged,’ coupled with other statements, gives consumers a misleading impression as to the age of the Product.” The complaint alleges that, “[u]pon information and belief, the Product’s youngest rum is not 18 years old.” Instead, it claims, the rum has a combination of older and younger rums, with an average age of eighteen years.

The representation that places the number “18” with the words “Slow Aged,” the complaint says, creates a misleading impression. According to the complaint, “Consumers are entitled to transparent and unambiguous statements describing a product’s attributes.” The complaint alleges that the rum is thus worth less than its “premium” $55.99 price.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Flor de Caña Rum Ambiguous “18” on Bottle New York Complaint

December 27, 2020

This class action brings suit against William Grant & Sons, Inc., a company that imports Flor de Caña rum to the US. Flor de Caña rum is made by Compañia Licorera de Nicaragua. The complaint for this class action points to a prominent “18” on the front label of the rum, directly above the words “Slow Aged,” and alleges that this gives consumers a misleading impression about the age of the rum.

Flor de Caña Rum Ambiguous “18” on Bottle New York Complaint

Case Event History

Flor de Caña Rum Ambiguous “18” on Bottle New York Complaint

December 27, 2020

This class action brings suit against William Grant & Sons, Inc., a company that imports Flor de Caña rum to the US. Flor de Caña rum is made by Compañia Licorera de Nicaragua. The complaint for this class action points to a prominent “18” on the front label of the rum, directly above the words “Slow Aged,” and alleges that this gives consumers a misleading impression about the age of the rum.

Flor de Caña Rum Ambiguous “18” on Bottle New York Complaint
Tags: Age or Aging of Product, Deceptive Advertising, Deceptive Labels