Costco to Face a Class Suit Over Its Kirkland Signature Sparkling Water Containing Synthetic Ingredients
A new class action lawsuit contends that Costco’s Kirkland Signature — Black Raspberry Flavored Sparkling Carbonated Water — fails to disclose that it is partially artificially flavored.
Timothy Akers v. Costco Wholesale Corporation
Plaintiff Timothy Akers alleges that Costco misleads consumers regarding the sparkling water’s ingredients by including images of black raspberries on the product’s packaging and coloring the beverage with synthetic food coloring.
Akers seeks to represent a class of Illinois consumers and a multi-state class of consumers spanning from Arkansas and Iowa who purchased the beverage.
What is Included in the Black Raspberry Sparkling Water
Plaintiff argues that the Costco sparkling water with a black-raspberry flavor contains DL-malic acid, which does not naturally occur, as opposed to L-malic acid, which naturally occurs in certain fruits, according to the lawsuit.
In addition, the class suit claims that Costco is deceiving consumers into believing that it solely includes natural flavors by failing to disclose on its packaging that it also uses artificial flavoring.
Akers further claims that Costco should have used L-malic acid — in order to avoid the use of artificial flavors — but instead opted to use DL-malic acid for it was either “more accurately resembled” or “cheaper” natural blackberry flavor.
Furthermore, according to Akers, consumers are also misled about the number of natural blackberry ingredients in the Costco sparkling water, who alleges that the drink comprises flavor compounds from other less expensive fruits.
According to the class action lawsuit, these chemicals are less expensive than utilizing only black raspberries, and because they are more concentrated, they require less black raspberry to be used.
Moreover, the product’s value is misrepresented as being higher than it actually is, prompting consumers to unintentionally spend more money than they would have otherwise.
Class Allegations Against Costco
Akers is accusing Costco of:
- Negligent misrepresentation — the defendant was required to represent the product correctly, which it failed to do
- Fraud — the product’s attributes and qualities were misrepresented and/or omitted by the defendant —, and
- Unjust enrichment — Defendant acquired benefits and monies as a result of the product failing to perform as advertised and intended, to the disadvantage and suffering of the plaintiff and the class members, who demand restitution and disgorgement of unjust profits —, as well as for
- Violating the Express Warranty, Implied Warranty of Merchantability and Magnuson Moss Warranty Act — the product was manufactured, labeled, and marketed by the defendant, who expressly and impliedly represented to the plaintiff and the class members that it did not include an artificial flavoring and it would contain more of the specified fruit ingredient than it actually did
Lastly, the plaintiff seeks a jury trial and seeks injunctive remedies in addition to monetary, statutory, and/or punitive damages on behalf of himself and all Class Members.
Editor’s Note on Kirkland Black Raspberry Sparkling Water Class Action Lawsuit 2021:
This article is written to inform you of the class action lawsuit filed against Costco over the alleged misrepresentation of its Black Raspberry sparkling water from Kirkland, failing to disclose all the ingredients included in the product. A similar class action was also filed against Kroger.
Case Name & No.: Timothy Akers v. Costco Wholesale Corporation, Case No. 3:21-cv-01098
Jurisdiction: U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
Products/Services: Kirkland Signature — Black Raspberry Flavored Sparkling Carbonated Water
Allegations: Costco allegedly misrepresented the product to the plaintiff and the class members
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