Breakfast Cereal Accused Of Falsely Advertising Cereal Ingredient

Friday, May 17th, 2019 | 866 Views

Breakfast cereal brand, Post, has been accused of falsely advertising ‘real cocoa’ in its chocolate-flavoured cereal, Cocoa Pebbles. The lawsuit filed against the company claims that this is misleading as the product actually contains alkalised cocoa which is different from ‘real’ natural cocoa. Alkalised cocoa powder is a popular option for industrial-scale production as it dissolves easily and it gives a deeper colour. However, this process reduces the acidity of the powder from pH 5 to pH 7 and detracts from its ‘real cocoa’ flavour. Hence, consumers are allegedly led to believe that the cereal contains real cocoa which is nutritionally superior to the processed cocoa powder.

Similar to Post, a lawsuit has also been filed against General Mills for falsely advertising that its Chocolate Cheerios contains ‘real cocoa’.

“No reasonable consumer would expect that a product promoted as containing ‘real cocoa’ or ‘100 percent real cocoa’ would also contain or be made with alkalis because ‘real’ is understood to be the ingredient in its most simplified and reduced form,” stated the lawsuit against General Mills.

As consumers become more aware of the ingredients that goes into products they consume, the need for transparency in food labelling increases. More food manufacturers are finding themselves having to keep up with consumer demands for natural or clean label ingredients and being clear in their food label descriptions.