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July 26, 2012 / Admin

Nutella: For Hazelnuts, Not Health Nuts

A federal district court in New Jersey approved a settlement earlier this year in a nationwide class action brought in connection with allegedly misleading advertisements run by Ferrero U.S.A., Inc., the New Jersey-based maker of the popular Nutella hazelnut spread.

A San Diegan mother filed a similar suit last year on behalf of California consumers, alleging that Ferrero advertised Nutella as “an example of a tasty, yet balanced breakfast,” and depicted healthy-looking families using Nutella among other healthy breakfast options, such as whole wheat bagels, milk and strawberries, despite allegedly high concentrations of sugar, saturated fat and calories.

The company’s website and labeling indicate that two tablespoons of Nutella contain 200 calories, 21 grams of sugar and 3.5 grams of saturated fat. Consumers, as the lawsuits allege, often use Nutella as an alternative to traditional breakfast condiments, such as peanut butter and preservatives. Two tablespoons of the popular Jiff-brand Creamy Peanut Butter contains roughly the same caloric count (190) and a comparable saturated fat content, but a tenth the sugar content (2 grams. An equal serving of Knott’s Berry Farm Raspberry Preserves contains half the calories but similar sugar content. A classic Hershey bar contains approximately the same calories and sugar as a serving of Nutella, though slightly more than twice the saturated fat.

Ferrero denied any wrongdoing, but agreed to settle both cases.  Qualifying consumers must submit all claims no later than July 5, 2012 by visiting this site.

If you feel your rights have been violated or you have been misled as a consumer, contact Khorrami, LLP for more information.

 

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