A Florida resident has filed a putative nationwide class action against the Vitamin Shoppe, Inc., alleging that the company makes efficacy claims for its dietary supplements, “sold in the growing and extremely competitive fitness industry as highly digestible protein products,” which purportedly contain insufficient quantities of a digestive enzyme to deliver the promised benefits. Mermida v. Vitamin Shoppe, Inc., No. 14-0172 (U.S. Dist. Ct., M.D. Fla., Fort Myers Div., filed March 27, 2014). The plaintiff also alleges that the company “falsely claims that lactase helps aid in the absorption and digestion of protein.”
Claiming that he relied on the allegedly deceptive product representations and sustained economic damages because the products do not provide the claimed benefits, the plaintiff alleges breach of express warranty, fraud by uniform written misrepresentation and omission, violation of the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (on behalf of a Florida subclass), unjust enrichment, and injunctive relief. He seeks actual, consequential, compensatory, and exemplary damages; restitution and disgorgement; injunctive relief; attorney’s fees; costs; and interest.