Various companies are facing massive lawsuits for defrauding consumers by using the term “evaporated cane juice” and implying that it is a healthy form of sweetener. The Food and Drug Administration has been sending out warning letters and providing draft guidance to companies, telling them to not use the words “evaporated cane juice” because it is false, misleading, and not “juice”. The agency further reprimanded companies pointing to regulations that indicate that ingredients must be described using common names and that “juice” is defined as ‘the asqueous liquid express or extracted from one of more fruits or vegetables.’
Notably, Chobani was being sued for using the term on its Greek yogurt containers. While the case was ultimately dismissed, the plaintiffs in that case argued that Chobani was using the term “evaporated cane juice” as a clever disguise for sugar. Even though the Chobani suit was dismissed, many other suits are moving forward. Among the companies being sued are Healthy Beverage, LLC., Wallaby Yogurt Co., Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s. More lawsuits are expected to arise from this misleading labelling as consumers pay more attention to the confusing labels on their food products.