Hal’s New York “Lemon” or “Lime” Seltzer NY and NJ Class Action

Carbonated or seltzer water beverages flavored with a small amount of fruit juice are popular supermarket items. Consumers expect such drinks to be flavored with fruit juice, the complaint for this class action contends. It alleges that Big Geyser, Inc.’s Hal’s New York lemon and lime seltzers are deceptive and misleading because they are not, in fact, flavored with actual fruit.

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

The second page of the complaint shows the bottles of the two products at issue: Hal’s New York Seltzer in lemon and lime flavors. The bottles bear the words “Naturally Refreshing,” the word “Lemon” or “Lime,” and an image of a wedge of either a lemon or a lime.

According to the complaint, these things are “direct representations with respect to their primary recognizable flavors…” Also, “[t]he ‘Naturally Refreshing’ statement gives the impression the Products are flavored with a small amount of juice because juice is more ‘natural’ than a flavor.”

This is misleading, the complaint claims, because the ingredient labels for the products do not show any juice. The only ingredients they list are “Filtered Carbonated Water and Natural Flavors.”

If the natural flavorings listed were derived from lemons or limes, the complaint says, “the Product’s front label is required to disclose the added flavor, i.e., ‘Natural Lemon Flavored Seltzer Water’ or ‘Lemon Flavored Seltzer.”

The complaint refers to a provision in the Code of Federal Regulations which sets forth requirements for the front label of a food (such as “lemon” seltzer water) which “contains no such [characterizing food] ingredient…” (i.e., contains no lemon). In that case, it says, “the name of the characterizing flavor may be immediately preceded by the word ‘natural’ and shall immediately be followed by the word ‘flavored’…”

The complaint says, “When a beverage purports to contain a fruit or vegetable juice but its front label does not use a form of the word ‘flavor’ or otherwise indicate that it does not contain juice, consumers get the impression that its flavor is derived from juice…”

Consumers these days prefer real juice rather than added flavorings. The complaint alleges that Big Geyser was able to sell more products at higher prices than it would have if the products were properly labeled.

According to the complaint, then, the “branding and packaging of the Products is designed to—and does—deceive, mislead, and defraud … consumers.”

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Hal’s New York “Lemon” or “Lime” Seltzer NY and NJ Complaint

April 26, 2020

Carbonated or seltzer water beverages flavored with a small amount of fruit juice are popular supermarket items. Consumers expect such drinks to be flavored with fruit juice, the complaint for this class action contends. It alleges that Big Geyser, Inc.’s Hal’s New York lemon and lime seltzers are deceptive and misleading because they are not, in fact, flavored with actual fruit.

Hal’s New York “Lemon” or “Lime” Seltzer NY and NJ Complaint

Case Event History

Hal’s New York “Lemon” or “Lime” Seltzer NY and NJ Complaint

April 26, 2020

Carbonated or seltzer water beverages flavored with a small amount of fruit juice are popular supermarket items. Consumers expect such drinks to be flavored with fruit juice, the complaint for this class action contends. It alleges that Big Geyser, Inc.’s Hal’s New York lemon and lime seltzers are deceptive and misleading because they are not, in fact, flavored with actual fruit.

Hal’s New York “Lemon” or “Lime” Seltzer NY and NJ Complaint
Tags: Contains Too Little of Featured Ingredients, Deceptive Advertising, Deceptive Labels