A California federal judge Friday preliminarily approved a $4 million class action lawsuit settlement between Barbara’s Bakery Inc. and consumers who say the company mislabeled its cereal and snack products as “all natural” when they actually contained genetically modified ingredients.
U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer tentatively signed off on the Snackimals class action settlement on June 21, which will provide consumers up to $100 in reimbursements if they purchased any of the Barbara’s products covered by the settlement. Covered products include Snackimals cereal, cereal bars, cheese puffs, snack mixes and crackers.
In addition, Barbara’s has agreed to remove the terms “all natural,” “no artificial additives,” “no artificial preservatives” and “no artificial flavors” from its packaging on foods that contain GMOs or artificial ingredients.
The company has already removed GMOs from 31 of its 35 products and is working on removing GMOs from all of its foods, according to the class action settlement. All of its packaging should be updated by August.
The Snackimals settlement will resolve a class action lawsuit filed in May 2012 by plaintiff Richard Trammell, who said he was misled into purchasing the company’s Puffins cereal because it was labeled as “all natural.”
Trammell said the label was deceptive and misleading because Puffins are made with unnatural ingredients. “Specifically, Puffins are made with GMO plants whose genes have been altered by scientists in a lab for the express purpose of causing those plants to exhibit traits that are not naturally their own. GMO are not natural by design,” the class action lawsuit states.
Details on how to file a claim for the Barbara’s Bakery class action settlement were not immediately available. Keep checking Top Class Actions for updates or sign up for our free weekly newsletter below.
The Barbara’s/Snackimals Class Action Lawsuit Settlement case is Trammell v. Barbara’s Bakery Inc., Case No. 12-cv-02664, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.
Trammell is represented by Tina Wolfson, Robert Ahdoot and Theodore W. Maya of Ahdoot & Wolfson PC.
UPDATE 2: The Settlement Administrator has posted the following update to the Settlement Website: THE CLAIMS PROCESSING IS NOW CLOSED AND THE COURT HAS APPROVED THE SETTLEMENT. Distribution is anticipated for late August 2014.
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