On Sunday, Misha Leshchiner filed a complaint in the Northern District of Illinois against Kellogg Sales Company for falsely representing the quantity of almonds and cranberries contained in their Special K “Cranberry Almond – Chewy Nut” bars.
Per the complaint, almonds are the “most consumed nut” in the U.S. due to their high protein content, “healthy fats,” and other nutrients that they contain. As a result, they are also the most expensive nut to purchase. Cranberries are similarly desired and expensive due to containing high amounts of fiber and antioxidants.
On the label of the Special K bars at issue, the complaint says, peanuts are listed as the top ingredient, with dried cranberries as the second, raisins as the third, and almonds as the fifth most prevalent ingredient. Based on laboratory analysis conducted by the plaintiff, “the approximate percentage of the Product that is peanuts is 20%, while almonds are 9%.” Similarly, “cranberries constitute 15% of the Product, raisins constitute 14%. ” The plaintiff claimed this is misleading since the packaging does not advertise the peanut and raisin content at all, and solely focuses on the almonds and cranberries contained in the bar.
In the complaint, Leshchiner reasoned that consumers “will not expect other nuts to be present in an amount greater than the highlighted ingredient of almonds.” Furthermore, if he had known the truth, he would not have bought this product at a “premium price” as it is predominantly made of lesser-valued ingredients. As a result, the plaintiff is suing for violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act, breach of express and implied warranty, negligent misrepresentation, fraud, and unjust enrichment.
The plaintiff is seeking class certification, injunctive relief enjoining the defendant to correct the challenged practices to comply with the law, restitution and disgorgement, monetary damages, statutory and/or punitive damages, attorney’s fees and costs, and other relief.
Leshchiner is represented by Sheehan & Associates, P.C.