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14 December 20203 minute read

DLA Piper represents Blue Diamond in dismissal of class action lawsuit

DLA Piper represented Blue Diamond Growers in the dismissal of a class action lawsuit filed in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York that alleged Blue Diamond misled customers by labeling its product as “vanilla” when it purportedly was not flavored exclusively with vanilla extract and purportedly contained artificial vanilla flavor.

US District Judge Victor Marrero granted Blue Diamond’s motion to dismiss in its entirety, finding that Blue Diamond’s label was not misleading because “a reasonable consumer would associate the representation of “Vanilla” – with no additional language modifiers – to refer to a flavor and not to vanilla beans or vanilla extract as an ingredient.” The Court explained that the representation would only be misleading if the product did not taste like vanilla, but the plaintiffs conceded that it did.

The DLA Piper team representing Blue Diamond was led by partner Colleen Carey Gulliver (New York) and partner Stefanie Fogel (Boston); along with of counsel John Packman (Atlanta); and associates Rachael Kessler, Negin Hadaghian, Jessica Wright and Tina Lapsia (all of New York).

DLA Piper’s Food and Beverage sector team counsels a broad range of companies that import, manufacture, process, distribute and market products regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, including foods, food additives, dietary supplements, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, animal drugs, biologics and cosmetics. The firm represents clients on a wide variety of matters before FDA and USDA and in state and federal courts on FDA-related matters. DLA Piper brings a strong understanding of recurring and emerging industry-wide issues and trends and has deep experience representing clients in class action and consumer protection lawsuits alleging false advertising and product liability.