A federal court has dismissed multidistrict litigation alleging that several brands' “100% Grated Parmesan Cheese” misled consumers because the products contained as much as 8.8 percent cellulose, finding that the claims were “doomed by the readily accessible ingredient panels on the products that disclose the presence of non-cheese ingredients.” In Re: 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese Mktg. & Sales Practices Litig., No. 16-5802 (N.D. Ill., entered August 24, 2017). Additional details about the litigation appear in Issues 595 and 606 of this Update.
The court found the cheese's label was ambiguous, noting, “Although 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese might be interpreted as saying the product is 100% cheese and nothing else, it also might be an assertion that 100% of the cheese is parmesan cheese, or that the parmesan cheese is 100% grated. Reasonable consumers would thus need more information before concluding that the labels promised only cheese and nothing more, and they would know exactly where to look to investigate—the ingredient list.”