Supreme Court Decides Coca-Cola’s Labeling Argument Lacked Juice

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Registrar Corp explains how the Supreme Court Ruling on the POM Wonderful vs. The Coca-Cola Company argument affects the global food and beverage industry.

Supreme Court of the United States
"Food and Beverage manufacturers must be aware that their labels can be 'policed' in more than one way."

On June 12, 2014, in a unanimous opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court (No. 12761) ruled that the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act does not pre-empt claims for unfair competition under the Lanham Act. Registrar Corp, a consulting firm specializing in FDA regulations, explains what the Supreme Court’s ruling means to industry.

In the ruling over the POM Wonderful vs. The Coca-Cola Company argument, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of POM Wonderful. As a result, POM Wonderful will be allowed to proceed with its lawsuit against The Coca-Cola Company over the labeling of a blended fruit juice.

Summary of the POM Wonderful vs. the Coca-Cola Company Argument:

  • The Coca-Cola Company, under its subsidiary Minute Maid, made a juice blend and labeled it as a “Pomegranate Blueberry” juice blend. The ingredients in this beverage are about 0.3% pomegranate juice. The main ingredients in the beverage are apple and grape juice.
  • Pomegranate juice manufacturer and competitor, POM Wonderful, sued The Coca-Cola Company under the Lanham Act for false advertising.
  • The Coca-Cola Company defends its labeling stating that the juice label meets with requirements set by the FDA
  • The Supreme Court ruled that POM Wonderful is allowed to proceed with its lawsuit.

“Food and Beverage manufacturers must be aware that their labels can be 'policed' in more than one way. FDA has requirements. FTC can enforce trade practices. And private competitors can sue for false advertising,” comments Registrar Corp’s Executive Director, Russell K. Statman.

Registrar Corp’s Labeling and Ingredient review department has a team of dedicated specialists that can perform a label review for your food or beverage product. Registrar Corp helps companies comply with U.S. FDA's extensive food labeling requirements by cross referencing your food labeling against thousands of pages within the Code of Federal Regulations as well as the Federal Register, EAFUS Database, GRAS Notices, Guidance Documents, Labeling Guides, and Warning Letters issued by U.S. FDA. With over 10 years of experience, Registrar Corp’s team of regulatory specialists has helped thousands of clients with their food and beverage labels.

About Registrar Corp: Registrar Corp is a FDA consulting firm that helps companies with U.S. FDA Regulations. Founded in 2003, Registrar Corp has assisted more than 20,000 companies to comply with FDA requirements. With 16 global offices, Registrar Corp's team of multilingual Regulatory Advisors can help your company to comply with U.S. FDA Regulations. For immediate assistance with U.S. FDA Regulations, phone Registrar Corp: +1-757-224-0177 or receive online Live Help from our regulatory specialists: Tweet Registrar Corp (@RegistrarCorp) with specific questions.

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David Lennarz

Liviana Callahan
since: 08/2010
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U.S. FDA Food Labeling Regulations