A Los Angeles County resident has filed a putative class action against the Austrian and British makers of “Oxygizer” water, claiming that the companies “falsely represent that through a patented process they are able to hyperoxygenate water and that consumption of Oxygizer leads to a number of purported beneficial health effects.” Ghazarian v. Oxy Beverages Handelsgesellschaft mbH, No. BC489773 (Cal. Super. Ct., filed August 7, 2012).
Noting that people cannot absorb oxygen through their digestive systems, the plaintiff alleges that the defendants mislead consumers by falsely claiming their beverage can aid athletic performance, transport oxygen to every body cell, strengthen the immune system, and help office workers in large cities make up oxygen deprivation. The companies purportedly claim that scientific tests support their product representations and that their water is patented; the plaintiff alleges that these claims are also false and misleading. According to the plaintiff, the Federal Trade Commission has brought successful actions against other companies making similar claims about hyperoxygenated water products.
Seeking to represent a nationwide class of product purchasers, the plaintiff alleges fraud, negligent misrepresentation and violation of the Business & Professions Code (false statements and unfair business practices). The plaintiff asks the court to require that the defendants change the name of the product and cease making misrepresentations about its effects. Also sought are special, general and punitive damages; restitution; attorney’s fees; and costs.