Monster and Hansen Beverage Face Fruit Juice Labeling Lawsuit

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New York, NY: Monster Beverage Corporation is facing a consumer fraud class action lawsuit over its labeling of Hansen band juice products. Specifically, the lawsuit alleges Monster labels the fruit juice beverages as being free of added sugar, when they contain juice concentrates.

Filed by Frank Cuzakis, lead plaintiff in Frank Cuzakis, et al. v. Hansen Beverage Co., et al., case number BC513620, in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los Angeles, the lawsuit states Monster subsidiary Hansen Beverage Co. has incorrectly included "No Sugar Added"graphics on the label of Hansen' pineapple grape juice, apple grape juice, organic apple juice and other beverages made from juice concentrate, in direct violation of federal law.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), prohibits companies from using the terms "no added sugar,""without added sugar"or "no sugar added"when that/those products contain added sugars, including sugars from concentrated fruit juice.

Further, according to the lawsuit, the FDA also stipulates that unless companies include a warning on products with calorie counts over 40 calories, the companies cannot use the term "no sugar added", even if sugar was not added during the manufacturing process. According to the lawsuit, a typical serving of Hansen apple juice contains approximately 120 calories, three times the 40-calorie limit for products to qualify as low-calorie. While the Hansen juices contain the "no sugar added"label, they fail to include a warning that the product is not a "calorie reduced"or "low calorie"beverage.

Cuzakis, who has diabetes, looks for products that are low in sugar. In this lawsuit, he alleges he regularly purchased Hansen fruit juices because of the "No Sugar Added"label on the packaging. He alleges that he relied on the "No Sugar Added"label when he selected Hansen beverages over other available beverages.

The lawsuit alleges that Monster, and Hansen Beverage unfairly profit from the public' desire to consume less sugar and reduce their calorie intake, as their labeling is misleading. The class action lawsuit accuses Monster and Hansen of negligent misrepresentation, breach of contract and violations of California' consumer protection laws.

Cuzakis is seeking to represent a class of California consumers who have purchased Hansen fruit juices over the past four years.

Cuzakis and the potential class are represented by Jordan L. Lurie, David L. Cheng, Sue J. Kim, Sharon G. Yaacobi and Arvin Ratanavongse of Capstone Law APC.

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