Posted October 8, 2013
A proposed class action lawsuit against Safeway has been filed alleging that the company misled consumers by describing its Open Nature Multi-Grain and Homestyle waffles as “100% natural” because they contained a chemical additive, sodium acid pyrophosphate (SAPP), according to an article by Food Navigator-USA, available here.
In a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, plaintiff Ryan Richards alleges that he bought the waffles because they were promoted as “100% natural,” paying a premium, and felt misled when he learned they contained SAPP.  The complaint is available here.
While the complaint describes SAPP as a “synthetic chemical preservative,” in baked goods like waffles, SAPP typically serves as a leavening agent.
Safeway has faced several class action lawsuits over its natural foods labeling in recent years, according to an article by San Francisco Business Times, available here.   Similar lawsuits have been filed over mislabeling issues in the Bay Area, as the FDA has not yet issued a legal definition for use of the term “natural” on food labels.
Last week, Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), introduced the Food Labeling Modernization Act of 2013, which addresses labeling issues, health claims, and would require a definition of “100 percent natural” ingredients.  A recent post from this blog on the Food Labeling Modernization Act of 2013 is available here.  The full text of the bill is available here.


For more information on food labeling, please visit the National Agricultural Law Center’s website, here.