Galeos, LLC has been sued in a federal court in California for misrepresenting the nutritional content of its miso-based salad dressings, purportedly advertised on the weight-loss TV show “The Biggest Loser” and promoted as beneficial to health. Healey v. Galeos, LLC, No. 11-00240 (U.S. Dist. Ct., C.D. Cal., filed February 11, 2011). Details about a previous suit with similar allegations filed in the same court appear in Issue 376 of this Update. The plaintiff contends that independent laboratory testing has shown that the label for the company’s Miso Caesar Dressing® understates the calories by 430 percent, the fat by 550 percent and the sodium content by 350 percent.
Seeking to certify a nationwide class of consumers, the plaintiff alleges violations of California’s unfair competition and false advertising laws, breach of express warranty and negligent misrepresentation. She also seeks an injunction requiring the publication of corrective nutritional values, compensatory and punitive damages, as well as restitution, interest, attorney’s fees, and costs. According to a news source, a company representative has indicated that testing by two different laboratories confirmed the accuracy of its calorie and fat counts, while the carbohydrate and sodium levels were apparently misstated. The company also reportedly claims that its dressings have been awarded a Best Low-Fat Dressing award from Gourmet Foods and are endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc. See Product Liability Law 360, February 11, 2011.