General Mills Must Defend Claim That Fruit Roll-Ups Are "Made With Real Fruit"

It’s been a while since we heard any updates on that class-action lawsuit against General Mills over its claims that Fruit Roll-Ups are “made with real fruit.” Well, yesterday the judge in the case gave it the go-ahead to proceed.

Among the allegations made by the plaintiff in the case is that General Mills is deceiving consumers by advertising and marketing Fruit Roll-Ups as “made with real fruit.” For example, says the plaintiff, the strawberry variety of the snack contains no strawberries but rather “pears from concentrate,” corn syrup, dried corn syrup, sugar and partially hydrogenated cottonseed oil.

The U.S. District Court judge in San Francisco found merit to the plaintiff’s claim that this might all be confusing and misleading to the average shopper:

The fruit snacks’ ingredients list cannot be used to correct the message that reasonable consumers may take from the rest of the packaging: that the fruit snacks are made with a particular type and quantity of fruit.

A rep for General Mills tells Reuters, “We stand behind our products, and we stand behind the accuracy of the labeling of those products.”

This news comes on the heels of a $3 million settlement in a similar lawsuit against the makers of Nutella for advertising that the hazelnut spread was some sort of health food.

Judge lets Fruit Roll-Ups lawsuit proceed [Reuters]