The Gerber Graduate Puffs lawsuit was filed by Nancy Henry, who alleges Gerber Peach Puffs have less than two percent peach juice concentrate. The lawsuit further alleges Gerber Graduate Puffs use names and images of bananas and sweet potatoes but only actually contain apple puree.
Gerber filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit saying its ingredient list is accurate. Johanna R. Savalli has also filed a similar lawsuit.
Gerber has faced regulatory action for how it has marketed its products. In 2014, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sent Gerber a warning letter concerning its marketing of Gerber Good Start Gentle Infant Formula. That letter stated Gerber was in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act by misbranding its baby formula. In its letter, the FDA noted that it had previously considered and denied Gerber’s petition requesting authorization to make a qualified health claim that 100 percent partially hydrolyzed whey protein in infant formula reduced allergy risk in infants.
“After reviewing the petition, the scientific evidence submitted with the petition, and other pertinent scientific evidence and information, FDA concluded that there is no credible evidence to support a qualified health claim relating the consumption of 100 percent whey protein partially hydrolyzed to a reduced risk of food allergy in infants,” the FDA wrote. “We are aware of no such credible evidence that has been developed since the time the petition was denied…”
The FDA closed its warning letter by noting that Gerber’s failure to correct the violations could result in legal action including seizure or injunction.
As a result of the alleged false marketing, Oula Zakaria filed a lawsuit against Gerber, alleging the company illegally marketed its baby formula by using false health claims. In January, a California federal judge tentatively awarded the lawsuit class-action status. The judge did rule that Gerber could submit evidence of the various packagings used on its products.
The Gerber Good Start lawsuit is Zakaria vs. Gerber Products Co., case number 2:15-cv-61554, in the US District Court, Central District of California.