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Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Phthalate Content Class Action

Phthalates—chemicals that are used to make plastics flexible—may migrate into food from the materials it makes contact with during processing or packaging. The complaint for this class action brings suit against the Kraft Heinz Company, alleging that phthalates—which tend to bind to fatty products—are present in its Kraft Macaroni & Cheese products.

The class for this action is all persons in the US who bought the products. A California Subclass has also been proposed for all persons who bought the products in California.

The complaint alleges, “Because phthalates bind with fats, they tend to be found at higher levels in highly processed or fatty foods” such as the macaroni and cheese products at issue.

Phthalates are known as “endocrine disrupters” because they tend to mimic or block the human body’s hormones, such as estrogen and testosterone.

According to the complaint, however, these aren’t like other chemicals that can find their way into foods: “Unfortunately, researchers have proved that, unlike other chemicals, phthalates appear to have more serious effects at lower levels than at higher levels.” Also, it points out, “Too much or too little of a hormone can be harmful.”

In animals, the complaint claims, phthalates can increase the risk of liver or kidney cancer and do damage to male reproductive organs; and exposure of children to phthalates can increase the risk of asthma, bronchial obstructions, and possibly obesity, among other things. Even prenatal exposure can be harmful, the complaint says. “[A]s of February 2009,” the complaint says, “children’s toys and child care products sold in the US (such as teething rings and plastic books) cannot contain phthalates.”

Eight out of nine Kraft Macaroni & Cheese products tested by the Coalition for Safer Food Processing & Packaging showed the presence of phthalates. While the EPA estimates safe doses to be between 0.1 and 0.01 ppm, Environmantal Health News reports that phthalates in products like the Kraft mac and cheese products can range from 0.2 ppm to 2.5 ppm.

Consumer groups have called on Kraft to remove phthalates from its products since at least 2017, the complaint alleges.

One of Kraft’s mac and cheese competitors, Annie’s, has said it would take measures to remove phthalates from its mac and cheese product. The complaint alleges that this shows that “the inclusion of phthalates in the products is entirely preventable.”

The counts include breach of implied warranty and fraud.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Phthalate Content Complaint

April 5, 2021

Phthalates—chemicals that are used to make plastics flexible—may migrate into food from the materials it makes contact with during processing or packaging. The complaint for this class action brings suit against the Kraft Heinz Company, alleging that phthalates—which tend to bind to fatty products—are present in its Kraft Macaroni & Cheese products.

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Phthalate Content Complaint

Case Event History

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Phthalate Content Complaint

April 5, 2021

Phthalates—chemicals that are used to make plastics flexible—may migrate into food from the materials it makes contact with during processing or packaging. The complaint for this class action brings suit against the Kraft Heinz Company, alleging that phthalates—which tend to bind to fatty products—are present in its Kraft Macaroni & Cheese products.

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Phthalate Content Complaint
Tags: Contaminated with Harmful Substances, Food Contamination, Fraud