BROOKLYN, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) – The maker of Reese's peanut butter cups is alleged to have misrepresented the white version of the candy as containing white chocolate.
Curtis Winston and Jane Doe, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, filed a complaint on June 26 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York against The Hershey Co. alleging deceptive trade practices, negligent misrepresentation, breach of express and implied warranty, fraud and unjust enrichment.
The defendant is the manufacturer of chocolates and candies, including candy under the Reese's brand name. The suit concerns the white Reese's peanut butter cups.
The plaintiffs allege the defendant implies that the white Reese's cup candies are a white chocolate version, as the regular flavors are made with chocolate. The plaintiffs alleges that the products are misleading because despite being portrayed as white chocolate, they do not contain white chocolate as they lack cocoa butter.
"Defendant has taken affirmative steps for consumers to mistakenly believe the products contain white chocolate and has intentionally failed to correct the misimpressions," the suit states. "The absence of any modifying term before or after 'white' renders the products misleading because consumers are not able to differentiate between white chocolate and cheaper substitutes like compound or confectionary coating made from vegetable oils when the term 'white' is applied to a product traditionally associated with chocolate."
The plaintiffs are seeking trial by jury, interest, attorneys' fees, costs and other relief deemed fit. The plaintiffs are represented by Spencer Sheehan of Sheehan & Associates PC in Great Neck, New York.
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York case number 1:19-CV-03735