According to a news source, U.K. High Court Justice Michael Briggs has ordered New York-based Chobani to change its “Greek” yogurt labels, finding that they mislead more than 50 percent of British consumers into believing that it was made in Greece. Company rival Fage brought the lawsuit to “restrain Chobani from passing off its American-made yoghurt in England and Wales under the description Greek yoghurt.” The court apparently determined that “the very small print used on the rear of Chobani’s pots” stating that the products are made in the United States was “nowhere near sufficient” to alert people to their true origin. Chobani claimed that the “Greek” designation was a reference to how the product is made and not to its country of origin.
Danone, which also makes the thickened, strained yogurt products, reportedly indicated that it was considering the implications of the ruling; it was temporarily barred in the U.K. from using the “Greek” yogurt designation on its products earlier this year. Additional details about the Danone action and the Fage v. Chaboni litigation appear in Issue 471 of this Update. See Metro, March 26, 2013; Telegraph and DairyReporter.com, March 28, 2013.