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Polar “Lemon” Seltzer Lemon Flavoring Class Action

Over the past five years, sales of sparkling water and seltzer drinks have increased more than 40%, as consumers become more aware of the hazards of drinks with large amounts of sugar. This class action brings suit against Polar Corporation for its seltzer with the flavor designated as “Lemon.” The complaint alleges that this designation is “false, deceptive and misleading” because the product does not have the “amount and type of lemon ingredients expected” by consumers.

Two classes have been defined for this action:

  • The Illinois Class is all persons in Illinois who bought the product during the applicable statues of limitations.
  • The Consumer Fraud Multi-State Class is all persons in Iowa, Arizona, Ohio, Alabama, Louisiana, West Virginia, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Michigan, Georgia, Utah, Delaware, New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont, Texas, Arkansas, Virginia, and Oklahoma who bought the product during the applicable statutes of limitations.

Seltzer now comes in flavors, which add some interest to the water. Some companies offer sparkling waters or seltzers with real fruit ingredients.

Page 2 of the complaint shows a can and a carton of the product, showing the designation “Lemon,” yellow bands at the top and bottom of the packaging, and an image of one or more lemon wedges.

The complaint alleges, “Consumers prefer foods which get their taste from food ingredients, which have nutritive value, instead of added flavoring, because the former are more natural, less processed and not exposed to additives and solvents used in manufacturing flavoring substances.”

It also alleges that consumers expect the product to have “a non-de minimis amount of lemon ingredients, based on the pictures of the lemon wedge and the prominent statement, ‘Lemon.’”

The complaint also claims, “The Refreshingly Natural” statement [on the carton] furthers this impression because lemons are a natural product that can be added in [their] natural form, through being expressed or squeezed.”

Also shown in the complaint is the product’s ingredient panel, which shows no lemon ingredients, but only “Natural Flavors.” The complaint interprets this term to mean that the flavoring comes “not mostly from lemons, but a mix of essences from a variety of fruits and vegetables that are combined in a laboratory, with additives and solvents, into highly concentrated formulas.”

The can bears the words “Made with Natural Flavors,” although the carton does not. The complaint claims this representation “is situated away from the center of the label where consumers are likely not to notice it, instead of in the center where identical federal and state regulations require,” and that it still “fails to tell consumers the source of the Product’s lemon taste.”

The complaint alleges that, “if a product contains a de minimis, negligible amount of lemon ingredient that is insufficient to characterize it, supplemented by the oils, essences or extractives of lemon, regulations require that the correct designation would be on the front label and would read, “Natural Lemon Flavored Seltzer.”

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Polar “Lemon” Seltzer Lemon Flavoring Complaint

February 4, 2022

Over the past five years, sales of sparkling water and seltzer drinks have increased more than 40%, as consumers become more aware of the hazards of drinks with large amounts of sugar. This class action brings suit against Polar Corporation for its seltzer with the flavor designated as “Lemon.” The complaint alleges that this designation is “false, deceptive and misleading” because the product does not have the “amount and type of lemon ingredients expected” by consumers.

Polar “Lemon” Seltzer Lemon Flavoring Complaint

Case Event History

Polar “Lemon” Seltzer Lemon Flavoring Complaint

February 4, 2022

Over the past five years, sales of sparkling water and seltzer drinks have increased more than 40%, as consumers become more aware of the hazards of drinks with large amounts of sugar. This class action brings suit against Polar Corporation for its seltzer with the flavor designated as “Lemon.” The complaint alleges that this designation is “false, deceptive and misleading” because the product does not have the “amount and type of lemon ingredients expected” by consumers.

Polar “Lemon” Seltzer Lemon Flavoring Complaint
Tags: Contains Too Little of Featured Ingredients, Deceptive Advertising, Deceptive Labels