Coca-Cola LawsuitCoca-Cola Co. has been targeted by a class action lawsuit accusing the company of lying about the ingredients it uses in its signature Coke soft drink.

Plaintiffs George Engurasoff and Joshua Ogden allege in the Coke class action lawsuit that Coca-Cola has been deceiving consumers by failing to mention that the beverage contains artificial ingredients. In some cases, they argue, the company falsely promises that the soft drink is free of artificial flavors and preservatives. Specifically, the plaintiffs are concerned about phosphoric acid, an artificial and man-made chemical that is used as both a flavoring and preservative.

“Such false statements and omissions violate both federal law and California state law and render these products legally misbranded and illegal to manufacture, distribute or sell to consumers,” the Coca-Cola class action lawsuit says. 

Engurasoff and Ogden claim that Coke’s marketing is governed by the federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act (FDCA), which prohibits companies from selling products whose labels do not accurately reflect the ingredients. Because the FDCA’s provisions have been adopted by California’s Sherman Food Drug and Cosmetic Law, the plaintiffs allege that Coca-Cola has violated California law as well.

“Defendants are well aware of the health concerns of consumers and knowingly and intentionally engage in such unlawful conduct to deceive consumers and increase products,” the class action lawsuit says. According to the plaintiffs, Coca-Cola’s website indicates that the company uses phosphoric acid in certain soft drinks, “to add tartness to the beverage.” However, the company insists that the ingredient is “one of the basic elements of nature.”

Engurasoff and Ogden argue that Coca-Cola’s claims are misleading because phosphorous and phosphoric acid are different chemicals. They claim that phosphoric acid should be classified as an artificial flavoring under the FDCA because it provides flavor but is not derived from natural sources. 

According to the class action lawsuit, the term “artificial flavoring” is defined under federal law to mean “any substance, the function of which is to impart flavor, which is not derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof.” 

The plaintiffs allege in the Coca-Cola class action lawsuit that they each purchased more than $25 worth of Coca-Cola products over the last four years. They relied on Coca-Cola’s label, which stated that the product has “no artificial flavors. no preservatives added. since 1886.” They claim that they would not have purchased the products had they known that the products were improperly labeled in violation of state and federal law. The plaintiffs believe that millions of Americans have been deceived by the company’s false labeling.

By filing the class action lawsuit, the plaintiffs are seeking to certify a nationwide class of consumers who purchased Coca-Cola products. They seek an injunction that would bar the company from continuing its allegedly illegal marketing practices. They are also seeking compensatory and punitive damages, restitution and disgorgement to the plaintiffs and Class Members.

The plaintiffs are represented by Ben F. Pierce Gore of Pratt & Associates.

The Coca-Cola Class Action Lawsuit is George Engurasoff, et al. v. the Coca-Cola Co., Case No. 1:13-cv-03990, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

 

UPDATE: On May 21, 2014, Coca-Cola Co. asked the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate this case with five other Coke class action lawsuits, saying the plaintiffs’ claims are all substantially similar.

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57 Comments

  • alice September 6, 2013

    how can i file a claim thats all i drink is coke

  • Linda F. Walker September 6, 2013

    9/6/13 Please include me in class action…I have drank diet coke for years…

    • LAVADA Mckinley April 30, 2014

      l have been drinking coke for over 39 years. what can I do

      • LAVADA Mckinley April 30, 2014

        how do I file

  • william banks September 6, 2013

    I have drank coke since I was a kid, how can I be involved in this suit?

  • Sarah September 6, 2013

    how do we file a claim?

  • hahaha September 6, 2013

    Like anyone drinks coke or other pop for the nutritional value! It just rots your teeth out and leads to diabetes and obesity. Come on, people, get a clue and learn about what you are putting into your bodies!

  • Kandis shannon September 7, 2013

    I spent over thousands of dollars on this product thought out my 35 yrs of life.. How do I file ??

  • anthony .battle September 7, 2013

    if coke is deceiving the consumer they should be sued. I drink coke because it supposed to be free of all arttifical bad ingredients.

  • glenda sewer September 7, 2013

    how can i file a lawsuit, i have spent $100’s of dollars on coke, email me as to how i can file a lawsuit, 11970 mose lane north, grand bay, al 36541.

  • Brenda Taylor September 7, 2013

    I have been drinking coke for many years. Please include me part of this class action lawsuit.

  • michelle smith September 8, 2013

    I have been drinking more than one or two diet for many many years. Please include me part of this class action lawsuit.

  • Debra Snyder September 8, 2013

    coke classic is the only soda I have drank for the past 40 years. How do I file a settlement complaint?

  • Gloria Bagby September 8, 2013

    Coke has always been my drink of choice. Please add me to any class action suit.

  • Cynt September 9, 2013

    I always love drinking coca cola I cannot believe this. Please just send me more information on
    when I can file

  • Lana September 9, 2013

    How do I file?

  • Shirl Dundas September 9, 2013

    This is my only soda drink. Please let me know how to file.

  • Onnie Duvall September 9, 2013

    Why only Coke? Why not all of the major soft drink manufacturers? I am sure they all omit something from their lists of ingredients.

  • DONNA hoffman September 9, 2013

    HOW DO I FILE?

  • MeganNorth September 9, 2013

    I am a long time coke drinker!! Im officially upset!

  • Rose Stegenga September 9, 2013

    I am 51 years old and have been drinking Coke for as long as I can remember, this really upsets me.

  • Nancy Cox September 9, 2013

    I have drank coke products for years. How do I file?

  • Oravae Hicks September 9, 2013

    I have consumed Coke in the past, but presently I have consumed non-caffiene soft drinks. How do I supply the information for the lawsuit?

  • Oravae Hicks September 9, 2013

    Correction *apply.

  • Dana Nolan September 9, 2013

    I have been drinking coke products for over 20 years, at restaurants, hotels, seminars and at home.

  • Barbara September 9, 2013

    I have been drinking coke for a long time ,,,, How do I file a claim

  • Kristin Rossi September 9, 2013

    I drank Coke for most of my life, but in the recent past, I became violently ill after drinking Coke store bought, at restaurants, and at home. I thought my system was acting up, then I realized I would have explosive diarrhea every time I drank a Coke. Coke is the only soft drink I consumed, but no more!

  • Deseree Robbins September 9, 2013

    How do I file a claim? Thanks.

  • Pam September 9, 2013

    I used to drink Coke when I was younger, now I only drink it if Pepsi is not available. I drank
    Coke for at least 30 years .

  • Kathleen Crawford September 9, 2013

    I drink 8-10 cans of soda a day, no wonder my stomach has been killing me.

  • DRAMAZEE September 10, 2013

    DAMN COKE I HATE BEING LIED TO SHOULD I SWITCH TO PEPSI OR BETTER YET ILL DROP BOTH LET ME KNOW HOW TO FILE A CLAIM

  • jeanne etherton September 10, 2013

    I have bought coke products for years, its disappointing they lied. How do I sign up?

  • don schaefer September 10, 2013

    I have been drinking coke products for years. So sad to be lied to by such a prominent company.

  • SP September 10, 2013

    I’ve been drinking Coke since I was a kid. How do I sign up?

  • Cheryl Wheler September 10, 2013

    I have drank coke for ever this is wrong for them to decieve the public

  • sherr barker September 10, 2013

    i have been drinking coke forever

  • Linford Simpson September 10, 2013

    They drink and make me drink so we all drink a lot.

  • DAVID DEBURRO September 10, 2013

    how do i file a claim for this legal action??? I have consumed coca cola products for over 40 years. I have chosen coca cola products to be my 1st soft drink beverage of choice. it is very disturbing to hear that there is a practice of deceptive ingredients short cutting, and deceptive advertising being exercised with the riparian public.

  • michael cedroni September 11, 2013

    i literally just drank vanilla coke, it says contains phosphoric acid, i now feel sick. i am fed up w false information from big corp.’s to make a buck while they pretty much poison us. how can i get in??

  • Robin Horner September 12, 2013

    All my husband and i ever drank was coca cola! My Husband passed away suddenly March 24th, 2013. I continue to drink CocaCola. But now I am wondering…Do I need to stop?

  • James V. Chianca September 15, 2013

    I have been drinking diet coke for years and I still do. I won’t be drinking it now. I am 60 years old.

  • Rebecca Seitz September 18, 2013

    I drink a coke 5 days a week at work

  • Bobby Jo Cummings September 20, 2013

    Diet coke enthusiast. Now ex-diet coke enthusiast.

  • Marie Liddell September 21, 2013

    I have been drinking coke cola for years and especially the diet coke and coke zero.My husband Elbert also drink as twice as much as i do..

  • John Krasta September 30, 2013

    I have been buying Coca Cola products my whole life…This deception cannot go on. Shame on Coca Cola for this shameful deception. Please include me in the Class Action.

  • Tina Fasano October 2, 2013

    I’ve been buying Coca-Cola for years. I have cases of it now.

  • Marion Lockwood October 3, 2013

    wow..disappointed

  • Jackie Powell October 6, 2013

    Please send me a claim form.

  • karen m zarate October 14, 2013

    i have always bought coke over pepsi…deception is bad….please include me

  • Penny October 15, 2013

    I by coke over Pepsi .. Roommate drinks diet. Please send me form

  • Caroline October 17, 2013

    I buy they soda’s all the time.

  • jennifer storm October 19, 2013

    I buy at lease two 12 pks aweek

  • SHIRLEY CULLEY November 12, 2013

    drinking a hot coke helps me get rid of my acid reflux so i drink a hot coke daily

  • Tamara Vidato November 15, 2013

    Please include my name in any class action that may arise from this complaint

  • glynis stevens November 20, 2013

    this is all I drink I want in on it

  • Veronica Smith January 8, 2014

    i want in on it

  • Top Class Actions May 26, 2014

    UPDATE: On May 21, 2014, Coca-Cola Co. asked the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate this case with five other Coke class action lawsuits, saying the plaintiffs’ claims are all substantially similar. More info:http://topclassactions.com/lawsuit-settlements/lawsuit-news/28211-coca-cola-wants-deceptive-labeling-class-action-lawsuits-consolidated/

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