Kellogg’s faces $5 million lawsuit for not having enough strawberries in its Pop-Tarts
Kellogg’s strawberry-flavored Pop-Tarts need more strawberries, according to a lawsuit filed against the company in August.
A class-action lawsuit, filed by Anita Harris in the Southern District of Illinois, argues that the Kellogg Sales Company is misleading consumers by promoting the breakfast pastry’s strawberry filling in its labels and marketing, giving an impression that the fruit filling contains "a greater relative and absolute amount of strawberries than it does.”
In reality, the company’s “Frosted Strawberry Toaster Pastries” contain 2% or less of “dried strawberries, dried pears, dried apples” and “red 40,” according to its nutrition label.
Harris claims the Pop-Tarts “cannot provide a true strawberry taste” since it is overwhelmed by “significant amounts” of pears and apples, and says the red food coloring gives consumers “the false impression” that the pastries contain more strawberries.
The lawsuit said if Harris had known the truth, she would not have bought the Pop-Tarts.
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“Whether a toaster pastry contains only strawberries or merely some strawberries ... is basic front label information consumers rely on when making quick decisions at the grocery store,” the lawsuit reads. “Strawberries are the Product’s characterizing ingredient ... (consumers) believe they are present in an amount greater than is the case."
The lawsuit compares Kellogg’s product to similar toaster pastries from other brands like Walmart’s Great Value and Dollar Tree’s Clover Valley. The competitors also offer “frosted strawberry” pastries but note that they are “Naturally & Artificially Flavored,” according to the lawsuit.
Kellogg’s did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The lawsuit goes on to cite the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act, which says deceptive acts such as “false pretense, false promise, misrepresentation or the concealment, suppression or omission of any material fact” is unlawful.
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Follow USA TODAY reporter Bailey Schulz on Twitter: @bailey_schulz.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Kellogg’s sued for not having enough strawberries in its Pop-Tarts