Calif. Judge Dismisses Hain Celestial Suit

PrintClaiming that studies submitted as evidence against BluePrint juice actually contradicted plaintiffs’ allegations against the brand’s ads and labels, a federal judge has tossed out a potential class-action lawsuit involving the brand.

This marks the second dismissal since February of a suit alleging that BluePrint ads and labels are misleading.

The lawsuit’s dismissal was based on the fact that scientific arguments in favor of the effects of high-pressure processing (HPP) as a way of deterring bacterial growth were cited in the very same documents that the plaintiffs were using to prove HPP’s lack of effectiveness.

A lawyer for the plaintiffs, Samuel F. Alamilla and Colleen King, had argued in their complaint that HPP is “similar to those of cooking and pasteurization, namely the destruction of vitamins, nutrients, live enzymes, nutritional value, and health benefits.” But they submitted an article titled High Pressure Processing of Foods: An Overview, in Emerging Technologies for Food Processing, which noted that the HPP process has “little or no effects on nutritional and sensory quality aspects of foods,” according to U.S. District Court Judge Vince Chhabria.

“The articles the plaintiffs cite thus contradict the allegation upon which their entire complaint hinges — namely, that pressure treatment deprives juice of nutritional value to a similar degree as pasteurization,” Chhabria wrote in an order dismissing the case.

In seeking a class action against BluePrint, Alamilla and King had alleged the company had misled consumers by claiming on BluePrint bottles and the company’s website that it was  “100% Raw,” “Raw and Organic” and “Unpasteurized.” The suit also compared high pressure processing (HPP) to pasteurization and claimed that Hain misled consumers by not disclosing information about nutritional deprivation.

“The plaintiffs argued at the hearing that the articles they cite do not in fact support this conclusion,” Chhabria wrote. “To the contrary, both articles repeatedly make the point that pressurization has less impact on nutritional value than pasteurization.”