Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are plants or animals whose cells
have been genetically altered with a gene from an unrelated species in
order to take on certain characteristics, such as resistance to insects
or increased nutrition. In the past 20 years, GMOs have become extremely
popular with food manufacturers and are now found in many of the popular
foods we eat.
More than 40 types of plants have been genetically modified worldwide,
including corn, canola, soybean, and cotton. Critics of GMOs say that
there are potential health effects that have not been studied or evaluated
properly. To date, there are three agencies that regulate GMOs for safety:
the FDA, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Yet in spite of the controversy surrounding GMOs, the FDA does not require
food manufacturers to label whether their products contain GMOs. They
only require that the labels be truthful and not deceptive. Unfortunately,
many food manufacturers have interpreted this to mean that they can label
their products “All Natural”-a label that is now being tested
in the U.S courts.
On March 26
th, Judge William Orrick refused to dismiss a class action lawsuit accusing
General Mills of misleading consumers by marketing Nature Valley products
as “all natural”. These products do, in fact, contain GMOs-something
the FDA has yet to determine is ‘all-natural’.
(Rojas v General mills 3:12-cv-05099) argues that the advertising on the front of General Mills Nature Valley
products misleads reasonable consumers. The front of the package displays
the term “100% Natural” and that message is reinforced in
several places around the box and individual wrappers. The judge denied
General Mills’ motion to dismiss the lawsuit on the grounds that
“these representation could easily be interpreted by consumers as
a claim that all of the ingredients in the products are natural, which
appears to be false because they allegedly contain GMOs and other synthetic
General Mills isn’t the first food manufacturer to come under fire
for these deceptive food-labeling tactics. Heinz, Tropicana, Ben and Jerry’s,
Naked Juice, and Campbell Soup have also been accused of deceptive food
labeling in recent years.
Consumers trust that the labels on their food and beverages are correct
and display accurate and up-to-date information. When those labels are
used to manipulate the public into falsely buying a product, consumers
are the ones who suffer. You have a right to know what you are eating-and
what you are consuming. Food manufacturers must respect your right to
choose and not resort to deceptive food labeling tactics to gain your loyalty.
Philadelphia Consumer Lawyers
The consumer lawyers at Golomb & Honik have successfully represented
numerous individuals in
deceptive food labeling lawsuits against large manufacturers and agricultural companies. Our experienced
Philadelphia consumer lawyers work tirelessly to protect consumer rights
and hold product manufacturers responsible for these deceptive advertising
tactics. To learn more about your legal options or to schedule a free
consultation call the
Philadelphia consumer lawyers at Golomb & Honik today at
1-800-355-3300 or 1-215-985-9177 or fill out our confidential
The national class action lawyers at Golomb & Honik have successfully
represented individuals throughout the United States.