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Labels (Still) Matter: Campbell’s Soup Pays Seven Figures to Settle “Low Sodium” Class Action

September 14, 2011 Leave a comment

The latest reminder that manufacturers must consider the costs and benefits of promoting health and nutrient content claims on product labeling:

Campbell’s Soup Company recently paid $1.4 million to settle a class action lawsuit that alleged its “Low Sodium” tomato soup labeling misled consumers.  The soup allegedly contained the same amount of sodium as the company’s regular soup, but Campbell’s sold it for a premium price.  (The complaint also alleged Campbell’s Healthy Request tomato soup claimed it was “Low in Fat,” even though it contained more fat than the company’s regular soup.)

Campbell’s denies liability and contends it complied with applicable laws. 

The purpose of this posting is not to comment on the factual or legal support for the parties’ claims or defenses.  The issue is that regardless of the merits, defending and resolving lawsuits arising out of product labeling claims can be very expensive.  Companies that invest proactively to minimize their litigation risks may avoid incurring these costs.

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