In June 2018, Judge Nathanael Cousins of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted class certification in a case brought by two California residents that the soft drink Canada Dry Ginger Ale didn’t contain real ginger, as the ads proclaim the drink does.
The plaintiffs stated their decision to purchase Canada Dry were influenced by the “made from real ginger” claim. This advertising claim was mentioned in their advertising campaign, along with the product packaging. The parent company of the soft drink, Dr. Pepper Snapple, claimed there are health benefits by consuming real ginger. Independent product testing revealed there was no “detectable” amount of real ginger in the beverage. The product was manufactured with ginger extract.
The lawsuit also cited that Dr. Pepper Snapple were the beneficiaries of a 9% growth in sales during the trailing months once the ad campaign launch the claim of “made from real ginger.” Since the original ruling by Jude Cousins, several other lawsuits have been filed.
This particular false advertising claim falls under section 13-2d FTC Control of Performance Claims. Dr. Pepper Snapple claimed their product, Canada Dry Ginger Ale, was manufactured with “real ginger,” which was a health benefit when consumed. As a result of the lawsuit, the parent company has agreed to change their ad campaign in 2019, moving away from the claim “made from real ginger.”
Dr Pepper Snapple now faces two suits over it