Starbucks Sued For Their Vanilla Frappuccino
American multinational coffeehouse chain, Starbucks, was charged with a class action lawsuit for allegedly misleadingly marketing their Vanilla Frappuccino Drink.
The class action lawsuit was filed by Glen Skalubinski, a Rhode Island Resident, in February 2021, in the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts.
Glen Skalubinski, the lead plaintiff, was previously a Rhode Island State Police trooper. He was appointed as Jamestown harbormaster in November 2020.
The particular Starbucks product in question is Starbucks’ bottled Vanilla Frappuccino Chilled drink. This product is commonly seen in supermarkets and convenience stores.
According to the plaintiff, the product was labeled as containing “natural flavors.”
However, it was not specified where the natural flavor came from, which is confusing for consumers who purchased the product.
The plaintiff, who bought the Starbucks drink in Uxbridge, Massachusetts, argues that the said product’s branding deliberately deceives consumers.
Consumers can misinterpret the label and assume that the product is made from natural vanilla.
The complainant adds that the ambiguous labeling has influenced the consumers’ decision to buy the product.
He asserts that he would not have purchased the said product if he had known that it did not contain natural vanilla.
The plaintiff specifically questions the front label of the bottled Vanilla Frappuccino from Starbucks.
According to the plaintiff, the front label contains the words “Vanilla with Other Natural Flavors.”
He argues that the label should explicitly specify that the product does not have vanilla.
Peter Wasylyk, the lawyer representing the lead plaintiff Glen Skalubinski, also declares that the front label of food products should contain accurate information about the product.
He adds that the correct ingredient list should be included to guide customers when buying.
Concerning this, he believes that the front label of the product in question should have indicated that it was “vanilla-flavored.”
Federal Laws on Vanilla Use
The lawsuit asserts that Starbucks has violated federal laws and regulations related to the use of vanilla.
The lawsuit states that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which has a Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act, requires that products’ labels contain the correct and complete list of ingredients.
The plaintiff asserts that products that are not made from vanilla beans should not be labeled as natural. This is because the FDA only acknowledges products made from vanilla beans as natural products.
Its lawsuit also states that Starbucks should specify that the bottled Vanilla Frappuccino drink is not made from vanilla beans.
The Class Action Lawsuit
The lawsuit seeks to correct Starbucks’ misleading advertising of their product.
It aims to represent class members residing in Massachusetts who have purchased the product being questioned that was produced by Starbucks.
In addition to corrective action, the lawsuit also aims to compensate affected class members with an estimated $5 million in total.
This amount includes damages and expenses incurred by the plaintiff, such as attorney fees, payments to reimburse customers for purchases made from buying the allegedly mislabeled product.
The lawsuit also aims to retrieve all profits that Starbucks has gained from selling the bottled vanilla frappuccino drink.
Editor’s Note on Starbucks Vanilla Frappuccino Class Action Lawsuit:
This article is published to inform you of the latest class action lawsuit filed against Starbucks for alleged false advertising of their bottled vanilla Frappuccino.
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