R.I. Man Sues Starbucks For Putting "Vanilla" On Chilled Frappuccino Bottle

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — A Rhode Island man has filed a class action lawsuit in Boston claiming Starbucks has been deceptively mislabeling its bottled Vanilla Frappuccino Chilled Coffee Drink.

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court in Boston Friday. It says the plaintiff, Glen Skalubinski, is a resident of R.I. who purchased the chilled Starbucks drink from a supermarket in Uxbridge, Massachusetts.

The bottled drink, which is often sold in fridges near checkout counters in supermarkets and convenience stores, is labeled by Starbucks as "Vanilla With Other Natural Flavors Starbucks Frappuccino Chilled Coffee Drink."

However, the class action lawsuit says in reality, the product contains "natural flavor," not real vanilla, as the ingredient that provides for its characterizing vanilla flavor.

"Defendant's labeling of its Product as if it contains vanilla as an ingredient, without reference to any wording that would inform reasonable consumers that the Product does not contain vanilla as an ingredient is deceptive, misleading, and unjust," the suit says.

Since the drink does not disclose that "vanilla" is a flavor and not an ingredient, the suit says the product's labeling is not in compliance with federal food labeling laws and regulations or the identical state regulations.

The lawsuit are seeking a jury trial for Starbucks' alleged "deceptive and misleading actions that have unjustly enriched" the company. It also seeks $5 million in damages, coverage of lawyers' fees, and all of Starbucks' revenue and profits from the sale of the "mislabeled" product in Massachusetts to go to the plaintiff and class.

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Written by Brit Smith

(Photo: Getty Images)

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