A consumer has filed a proposed class action against Vigo Importing Co. alleging its octopus product is actually jumbo squid, “which is significantly cheaper and of a lower quality than octopus.” Fonseca v. Vigo Importing Co., No. 16-2055 (N.D. Cal., San Jose Div., filed April 19, 2016). The complaint details each animal’s taxonomy within the animal kingdom and describes the current populations of each—octopus populations “have dwindled around the world due to over-fishing,” while “jumbo squid populations have been thriving” because of the squid’s “ability to adapt to changing ocean conditions caused by global warming.” As a result, “the cost of octopus has risen dramatically compared to the cost of squid,” and “due to similarities in texture, squid can easily be substituted for octopus without the consumer being able to tell the difference particularly when sold in a sauce like garlic sauce or marinara sauce.” The plaintiff argues that independent DNA testing determined the contents of Vigo’s Octopus in Marinade and Octopus in Soy and Olive Oil were actually jumbo squid. For alleged breach of warranties, unjust enrichment, fraud, misrepresentation and violations of state consumer-protection laws, he seeks class certification, damages, restitution and attorney’s fees.
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Lawsuit Alleges Company Substituted Jumbo Squid for Octopus
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