Diamond Foods in firing line again over ‘natural’ Kettle chips

By Gill Hyslop contact

- Last updated on GMT

Kettle potato chips maker Diamond Foods are facing a second class action lawsuit alleging false advertising. Pic: ©GettyImages/MichaelBurrell/lepas2004
Kettle potato chips maker Diamond Foods are facing a second class action lawsuit alleging false advertising. Pic: ©GettyImages/MichaelBurrell/lepas2004

Related tags: Diamond foods, Kettle potato chips, Lawsuit, Preservative, Court, Fraud

Diamond Foods is facing a second class action lawsuit alleging its Kettle potato chips contain a synthetic preservative, thus falsely claiming to being ‘Made with Natural Ingredients’ and ‘No Preservatives’.

New Yorker Denise Mason has filed a complaint in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York against Diamond Foods LLC, doing business as Kettle Foods Inc., alleging violation of state consumer protection statutes, the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, breach of warranties and common law fraud.

The products at issue in the Kettle chips class action lawsuit:

  • Organic Sea Salt & Vinegar Potato Chips
  • Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper Krinkle Cut Potato Chips
  • Backyard Barbeque Potato Chips
  • Chili Lime Potato Chips
  • Buffalo Bleu Krinkle Cut Potato Chips
  • Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chips
  • Pepperoncini Potato Chips
  • Tropical Salsa Potato Chips
  • Fiery Thai Potato Chips
  • Country Style Barbeque Potato Chips
  • Honey Dijon Potato Chips
  • New York Cheddar Potato Chips

She claims the Kettle chips are falsely marketed as being made without preservatives, but in actual fact contain citric acid, which is listed as a chemical preservative by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Additionally, she asserts the company charged a premium for the chips, relying on consumers’ willingness to pay more for ‘all natural’ foods.

The lawsuit states that “consumers are willing to pay more for less processed products with no additives because of this association, as well as the perceived higher quality, health, and safety benefits associated with products labeled as being free of preservatives.”

Mason  – who is represented by Michael J. Gabrielli of Gabrielli Levitt LLP in Bronx, New York – requests a trial by jury and seeks judgment against the defendants for actual, monetary and punitive damages; declaratory relief; costs and expenses of suit; attorney’s fees; and further relief as the court may deem just.

Back in the dock

This is not the first time Diamond Foods has come under fire for allegedly falsely advertising their products.

In 2015, it settled a class action lawsuit that also alleged Kettle brand chips were not natural or preservative-free out of court.

However, the company denied any wrongdoing, asserting the marketing and advertisements for the chips adhered to all applicable laws.

Case:

Denise Mason v. Diamond Foods LLC d/b/a Kettle Foods Inc.

Case No. 1:18-cv-06423-GHW

Related topics: Snacks, Manufacturers

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