Class Action Lawsuit Against Kellogg’s “Misleading” Pop-Tart Labels Dismissed

On Tuesday, Judge Marvin E. Aspen of the Northern District of Illinois filed a memorandum opinion and order in Chiappetta v. Kellogg Sales Company, a case concerning allegedly the misleading packaging of Kellogg’s Unfrosted Strawberry Pop-Tarts, said by the plaintiff to violate the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act (ICFA).

In her complaint, Chiappetta claimed that the Pop-Tart packaging misled her and other consumers into believing that the fruit filling contained “only strawberries and/or more strawberries than it does ” because it bears the word “Strawberry” in the name. However, the product contained “dried pears, dried apples, and a food dye known as ‘red 40,’ among other ingredients.” Because of the numerous health benefits associated with strawberries that are not contained in these products, the plaintiff argued that Kellogg is profiting from the false labeling of their products.

The court first analyzed her ICFA claim by determining if she identified any plausible untruth or deception. They held that “the front of the Product packaging does not state or suggest anything about the amount of strawberries in the Product’s filling or guarantee that the filling contains only strawberries” and that since the product does contain some amount of strawberries, the ICFA claim does not pass muster.

Furthermore, her claims for breach of express and implied warranties were dismissed because Kellogg never claimed that the Pop-Tart filling was solely made of strawberries and thus failed by the same reasoning as above. Because of this error, the court sided with Kellogg in all their reasons to dismiss the remaining claims, including violation of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, negligent misrepresentation, fraud, unjust enrichment, and for injunctive relief due to a lack of standing on all grounds.

The court granted Kellogg’s motion to dismiss in its entirety, and Chiappetta has until March 22 to amend her complaint if she chooses to do so. The plaintiff is represented by Sheehan & Associates. The defendants are represented by Jenner & Block.