Lawsuit Against Jim Beam Challenges Bourbon’s “Handcrafted” Claim

When it comes to making a name for a brand, the words companies use to describe their products are chosen very carefully for maximum appeal. But the thing is, those words have to be true. Jim Beam is the latest liquor maker to face challenges over its claims that its bourbon is actually “handcrafted.”

The lawsuit against Jim Beam was filed as a potential class action in U.S. District Court in California, reports the Lexington Herald-Leader. The plaintiff is represented by the same law firm that’s suing Maker’s Mark, also owned by the company that owns Jim Beam, Beam Suntory Ltd.

The suit alleges that when it comes to Jim Beam White Label, the bourbon is not handmade by a skilled craftsman, despite the company’s claim that it is.

“Such conduct by defendants is ‘unfair’ because it offends established public policy and/or is immoral, unethical, oppressive, unscrupulous and/or substantially injurious to consumers in that consumers are led to believe that Jim Beam bourbon is of superior quality and workmanship by virtue of it being ‘handcrafted,’ when in fact it is not,” the suit says.

Beam Suntory called the claim “frivolous” in a statement, adding, “We will defend our case vigorously and we are confident that we will prevail. Beyond that, as a matter of company policy, we don’t comment on the details of matters in litigation.”

Jim Beam is the latest spirit sued over ‘handcrafted’ claim [Lexington Herald-Leader]