Beginning Next Week: InsideCounsel will become part of Corporate Counsel. Bringing these two industry-leading websites together will now give you comprehensive coverage of the full spectrum of issues affecting today's General Counsel at companies of all sizes. You will continue to receive expert analysis on key issues including corporate litigation, labor developments, tech initiatives and intellectual property, as well as Women, Influence & Power in Law (WIPL) professional development content. Plus we'll be serving all ALM legal publications from one interconnected platform, powered by Law.com, giving you easy access to additional relevant content from other InsideCounsel sister publications.

To prevent a disruption in service, you will be automatically redirected to the new site next week. Thank you for being a valued InsideCounsel reader!

X

“All natural” called into question in recent suits

Consumers call for official definition for food products

Recent lawsuits centering on some popular brands, which use the term “all natural” on their labels, have questioned what the term really means.

Several consumer suits filed against the makers of Wesson cooking oil, Kashi cereals and Skinnygirl margaritas claim the companies, which own those brands, are committing fraud by using “all natural” on the products’ labels. The suits say the products “all natural” ingredients are negated by the fact that the foods also include artificial and synthetic ingredients, and as a result, consumers are being misled.

But there currently is no official definition for “all natural,” and some legal experts blame the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) for the recent onslaught of suits because it’s the agency’s responsibility to provide clarification on the term.  And even though it has received various requests to define “all natural,” the FDA has declined to do so. It claims it has other, more pressing matters to tend to and is restrained by limited resources.

Until the FDA does actually define “all natural,” plaintiffs and defendants only have its 20-year-old informal policy to fall back on—that “natural” means nothing artificial or synthetic.

Editor

Cathleen Flahardy

Bio and more articles

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.