Trader Joe's sued over country of origin labels

Trader Joe's sued over country of origin labels

Made in USA Foundation alleges that the retailer is selling meat and produce with country of origin labels that are outright misleading and confusing.

Made in USA Foundation Chairman Joel D. Joseph filed a lawsuit in the County of Los Angeles Superior Court of the State of California against Trader Joe's Co. (DOC # BC 543455) requesting an Injunction against the company, and alleging they are selling meat and produce to consumers with "country of origin" labels that are outright misleading and confusing.

Mr. Joseph filed the lawsuit after shopping at Trader Joe's and seeing labels improperly and incorrectly labeled with multiple country of origin designations and provides exhibits within his lawsuit showing the multiple country of origins on labels for spinach, lettuce, ground beef and rib eye steak that is not compliant with United States Department of Agriculture requirements and the U.S. Country of Origin Act (COOL).

Nationwide, consumers are increasingly at risk to foodborne illnesses like E. coli and mad cow disease that are rampant in certain countries. Consumers may want to avoid food from certain countries and with Trader Joe's misleading and confusing labeling with multiple countries listed on meat and produce, it's almost impossible for consumers to make informed, intelligent choices to protect their health and their family's health.

"I helped draft, lobby and achieve the passage of the federal Country of Origin Labeling Act," stated Joseph. "The entire purpose of Country of Origin Labeling act is that no commingling would be allowed so that consumers could chose American food over foreign if they so desired." Joseph added.

Mr. Joseph stated: "In stark contrast to Trader Joe's absence of a right to mislabel, consumers under the California Supreme Courts Kwikset decision and under the Country of Origin Labeling Act have a right to know where the food products that they are paying for are grown or raised."


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