The US Supreme Court has given beverage maker Pom Wonderful the go-ahead to sue Coca-Cola Co. over marketing of Minute Maid’s Pomegranate Blueberry drink.
The drink is labled in smaller type with the phrase “Flavored Blend of 5 Juices” but it is made almost entirely from apple and grape juice, The New York Times reported Thursday.
On behalf of the court, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote that the blend contained a “minuscule amount of pomegranate and blueberry juices”, the report said.
The case turns on application of two federal laws, “one allowing private lawsuits over misleading advertising and the other authorizing federal regulation of food labels”, the report said.
According to Reuters, lower courts had said it was up to federal authorities – and not private players — to object to allegedly misleading juice labels.
But Kennedy said the two statutes complement each other and competitors like Pom could mount such challenges because “their awareness of unfair competition practices may be far more immediate and accurate than that of agency rule makers and regulators.”
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