On the heels of lab tests done for Consumer Ally that showed Galeos low-fat, low-calorie dressing was neither, a class action lawsuit was filed in federal court alleging the company intentionally deceived consumers with its claims and committed fraud.
Our lab tests showed the popular Galeos Miso Caesar Dressing -- hyped on the NBC reality show "The Biggest Loser" and by featured personal trainer Jillian Michaels -- had 10 times the calories per serving that are claimed on the label. That's about the same as what full-fat, premium dressings have.The alleged deception occurs before you even measure the calories and fat. The label shows a serving size of one tablespoon. That's half the size of what other salad dressings show and what is required by law.
The New Jersey law firm Paris Ackerman & Schmierer filed the suit with co-counsel in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles on behalf of all those who bought the dressings under the belief they were a lower fat and lower calorie alternative.The lawsuit seeks more than $5 million in damages on behalf of more than 500,000 consumers.
"As a central part of their advertising and sale of their line of Miso Dressings, Galeos employed marketing campaigns pursuant to which they made false and misleading claims concerning the nutritional information of its products," the lawsuit alleged.
The lawsuit said Galeos knew or should have known its entire marketing campaign was based on a falsehood and that "The Biggest Loser" show and viewers relied on the claims the dressings were healthy.
In an interview with Consumer Ally, Galeos co-owner Andrei Leontieff disputed the findings of the testing conducted by an independent lab hired by Consumer Ally. He did not produce any documentation of how the figures on the labels were determined and has since sent letters to angry consumers saying that he was hiring a lab to produce tests that would validate the labels.
Food labels are frequently found to be in error, but the law allows a significant margin before a product is considered to be "misbranded." Government testing of the food labels consumers are told to rely on to make healthy eating choices is virtually non-existent.
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