Kellogg's, the maker of the iconic pop-tarts, is facing a class-action lawsuit over the contents of its strawberry-flavored snacks. According to USA Today, the company is being accused of misleading customers about what exactly goes into the filling of Strawberry Pop-Tarts, which contain mostly fruits other than strawberries.
Anita Harris, who filed the lawsuit in the Southern District of Illinois in August, claims that by promoting strawberries as a primary ingredient in the name of the product and accompanying marketing materials, the company is creating an impression among consumers that there is "a greater relative and absolute amount of strawberries" in the product than is true. She claims that had she known the truth, she wouldn't have purchased the pop-tarts.
The ingredient list on the back of the Strawberry Pop-Tarts box states that there is "2% or less" of apples, pears, and strawberries in the product, which is less than one might assume when buying something strawberry-flavored. Additionally, Harris claims that the snack cannot "provide a true strawberry taste" since it is "overwhelmed by significant amounts of pears and apples," which are inferior to strawberries when it comes to health benefits. The company, she says, enhances the perception of the strawberry flavor with red food coloring.
In her lawsuit, Harris compares Kellogg's pop-tarts to similar toaster pastry products from Walmart's and Dollar Tree's in-house labels. She claims that while those products use similar ingredients, they label the product as "Naturally and Artificially Flavored," which is more forthcoming.
According to TMZ, New York consumer Elizabeth Russet has recently filed a lawsuit with nearly identical claims against the company. She is seeking damages in the amount of $5 million and wants to see the Strawberry Pop-Tarts labeled more accurately.
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