Taco Bell beef is fodder for a lawsuit. Alleging that there is less Taco Bell meat and more proprietary binders, fillers and extenders, a class-action seeks to address what it claims is false advertising. Ever wonder about similar claims surrounding other food makers?
Taco Bell Lawsuit: Not Enough Beef, Too Much of Everything Else
As outlined previously, Amanda Obney is at the center of a Jan. 19 Taco Bell lawsuit. Attorneys allege — on her behalf — that Taco Bell meat does not actually meet the USDA’s definition of beef.
While there is some easing in the definition of “beef filling,” the lawsuit further claims that the Taco Bell beef falls short even in this department: rather than featuring 40 percent beef, the suit asserts that the filling only features 36 percent. Seeking class action status, the attorneys further raise false advertisement claims.
False Advertising Claims over Fast Food? Not Unheard of!
WCAX revealed on Jan. 7, 2011 that the Vermont Agency of Agriculture is asserting false advertising in McDonald’s use of the term “maple” in its “Fruit and Maple” oatmeal. The agency claims that Vermont maple laws require natural maple products to be made with maple syrup.
The oatmeal only contains natural maple flavoring. Under Vermont’s false advertising laws, McDonald’s can either add real maple syrup or change its ads to adhere to the rules. At this time, the state has given the fast food giant a 90-day window of time to consider its response.
Biggest Loser Salad Dressing Controversy
The Miso dressings made famous by the “Biggest Loser” reality show is also fodder for a class action lawsuit. The Los Angeles Times reported in November 2010 that a consumer alleged false advertisement with respect to the stated levels of sodium, fat and calories. She claims that testing showed these values to be significantly higher than stated on the products. The company denies the allegations.
Coca-Cola under Fire for Vitamin Water Claim
In the U.K., Coca Cola’s Vitamin Water brand came under intense scrutiny. BBC News reported the Advertising Standards Authority took the company to task for its use of the slogan “delicious and nutritious.” While officials do not dispute that Vitamin Water is delicious, they balk at the idea that it is nutritious.
Banning the advertisement, the U.K. claimed that meeting 100 percent of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C does not offset the five teaspoons of sugar (one quarter of the advisable daily intake) contained in the drink. Coca Cola registered its reaction as being “disappointed.”
As the Taco Bell meat lawsuit winds itself through the court system, it will be interesting to see how attorneys will pursue the false advertising allegations they set forth.
AC: “Taco Bell Meat Lawsuit Alleges Too Little Ground Beef, Too Many Fillers”
WCAX: “Vt. takes on McDonald’s over maple”
L.A. Times: “Lawsuit: ‘Biggest Loser’ salad dressing not as healthy as advertised”
BBC News: “Advert for Coca-Cola Vitamin Water ‘misled public'”