Not-So-Natural Peaches: Aldi Sued Over "100% Fruit Juice" Label

aldi yellow cling peaches

Lawsuit Claims Grocery Chain Misleading Consumers with Added Ingredients

Aldi’s juicy promise of peaches in 100 percent fruit juice turns out to be not so sweet, with a lawsuit accusing the company of adding a blend of undisclosed ingredients including manufactured chemical compounds.

The lawsuit alleges the company has tried to capitalize on consumers increasing desire to buy healthy and “real” ingredients by marketing its sliced peach pieces in single cups as being in 100 percent fruit juice and having images of peaches with intact stems on the packaging, signaling the peaches included are fresh and natural when in fact they’re not, the lawsuit argues. 

Marketing mismatch: From fresh to heavily processed

Nancy Bono filed the proposed class action lawsuit in New York saying she, like many other consumers, relied on the packaging to learn what the peaches contained. She added that, also like most consumers, she tries to avoid additives based on the belief that they are potentially harmful, not natural, and unhealthy. 

Because of that and Aldli’s marketing that “Yellow Cling Diced Peaches In 100% Fruit Juice” appeared to be “100% Fruit Juice,” without water, juice concentrates, flavorings, or other synthetic preservatives, she trusted the company and purchased them.

However, Bono later discovered that the peaches contain a range of other ingredients, including water, juice concentrates, flavorings, seasoning, synthetic preservatives, and more, and is now accusing Aldi of false and deceptive advertising and injuring consumers, including herself.

Watered-down truth: Where’s the juice?

Bono's lawsuit takes particular aim at the "100% Fruit Juice" claim.  She argues that the actual juice content is diluted with water and juice concentrates, raising concerns about the product's nutritional value. The lawsuit further claims water is the most prominent ingredient after peaches, suggesting a lower concentration of the advertised fruit juice.

Bono also expresses concern over the use of juice concentrates, which the lawsuit argues undergo significant processing, potentially stripping them of essential nutrients like vitamins and fiber.

“The cost of water is substantially less than peaches and 100% fruit juice. Water lacks the nutrients, such as fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants, of peaches and 100% fruit juice,” she says in the lawsuit.

Consumer shift towards natural and transparency

The lawsuit reflects a growing trend of consumers demanding transparency in food labeling.  As the popularity of organic and natural food options surges, shoppers are increasingly seeking products that align with healthier and more environmentally responsible choices.

However, the lawsuit argues that companies like Aldi exploit this trend by using misleading labels to promote products that may not be as natural or healthy as advertised.

Not the first fruitless promise: A pattern of deceptive labeling?

Aldi isn’t alone in attracting legal action over its marketing claims. Recently, Ricola was hit with a class action lawsuit for allegedly falsely claiming its herbs are from Switzerland. While the packaging tells of herbs from the Swiss Alps, with pictures of peppermint, elder, wild thyme, horehound, hyssop, mallow, thyme, lemon balm, linden flower, and sage blowing in the mountain wind, the reality is that the herbs come from far less snowy location: the fields of India.

Bakery and cafe giant Panera is also facing heat from customers who say the bread maker is using “false and deceptive practices” selling its Sprouted Grain Bagel Flat. And Ocean Spray has been accused in a class action lawsuit of misleading consumers with high added sugar in snacks promoted as healthy. 

Bono's lawsuit seeks to represent New York consumers and alleges violations of state business laws. 

The plaintiff and class are represented by Spencer Sheehan of Sheehan & Associates P.C. 

The Aldi not-so-natural peaches class action lawsuit is Bono v Aldi Inc., Case No. 2:24-cv-03026-NJC-AYS in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York Central Islip.



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