Naked Juice, owned by PepsiCo., is coughing up $9 million to customers in a class action lawsuit over misleading claims on their labels. A typical Naked Juice bottle made statements like “All Natural,” “Non-GMO” and “Not From Concentrate.” The lawsuit alleged that these claims were misleading: some Naked Juice varieties contain soy grown from genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
The “All Natural” claim made by Naked Juice was also challenged. “Natural,” is a nebulous term used on all sorts of food packaging, and it doesn’t have the sort of defined regulations that the term “organic” does. Naked Juice has removed “All Natural” from its labels until there is more clarity on what that means.
So, who gets that $9 million? It will be divided up among people who have purchased a Naked Juice between September 27th, 2007 and August 19th, 2013. If you happen to have proof of purchase of a Naked Juice (might want to rifle through your recycling bin tonight) from August 19th or earlier, you can collect $75 by filling out a form on NakedJuiceClass.com. For those of us who didn’t save our Naked Juice bottles, we can still get $45. I just did it, and it took about one minute.
Naked Juice claims no particular wrongdoing in a statement on Facebook, but managed to sound cheery about the whole thing:
“Our juices and smoothies are made with all-natural fruits and vegetables—with no added sugar and no preservatives. In some products, we also include an added boost of vitamins. The ‘all natural’ claim on our label described the fruits and vegetables in the bottle—not the vitamin boosts added to some Naked beverages. Naked juice and smoothies will continue to be labeled "non-GMO," and until there is more detailed regulatory guidance around the word “natural” —we’ve chosen not to use “All Natural” on our packaging. We’re pleased to have reached this agreement and look forward to focusing on what we love doing best: making great-tasting, great-for-you Naked juices and smoothies from the finest, purest and fruits and vegetables.”
$9 million isn’t nothing, but PepsiCo can afford it, and with any luck, those of us who receive $45 or $75 from Naked Juice will come away with positive associations with the brand.