Missouri Supreme Court stalls Diet Coke lawsuit

The Missouri Supreme Court rejected this week class-action
certification for lawsuit against the Coca-Cola Co. that alleged that the
company misled consumers by not labeling the fountain version of Diet Coke as
containing saccharine.

A county judge had approved the lawsuit as class action in February
2006, the Associated Press reported, but
the state’s highest court unanimously overturned the earlier decision. The
judges said the classification was too broad, and determining the population of
people that would have altered their fountain drink choice in light of the
ingredient would present too large of a managerial task.

Saccharin, the oldest of the common artificial sweeteners,
was dropped from a federal list of cancer-causing chemicals in 2000. But some
people still are reluctant to use it.

The lawsuit alleges that the issue isn’t whether anybody
suffered injury from the ingredient, but that people have a right to know what
they’re putting in their bodies, the AP

Ralph Phalen, the Kansas City attorney that filed the
lawsuit, said he didn’t know if his client would want to continue the lawsuit
now that class action certification had been denied, the AP reported.