You’ve seen the ads: young women wielding popsicles and explaining that high-fructose corn syrup, or “corn sugar,” is natural and nutritionally the same as table sugar. Sugar processors disagree. Back in 2011, a group of large sugar processors sued a group of large corn processors for $1.5 billion, claiming that these ads are false. Corn processors shot back, filing a countersuit that said the “sugar industry falsely depicted corn syrup as less healthful than sugar in a desperate effort to combat flagging market share,” Los Angeles Times reports.
The bitter dispute recently came to a head at trial. Now it will be up to the jury to decide who gets the fuzzy end of the lollipop.
This is a great reminder that advertisements designed to reach your consumers will also reach your competitors. Without attorney oversight, marketing spin could easily land you in court.