Singer Justin Timberlake is being sued as part of a class action lawsuit against the Bai brand of drinks. According to news report, the lawsuit accuses the beverage company of deceiving consumers by claiming that the drinks are “all-natural” when they are not. The lawsuit, filed by Kevin Branca of California, names Bai Brans, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Dr. Pepper’s president Larry Young and Bai founder Benn Weiss. While the original lawsuit did not name Timberlake, an amended complaint filed this week added him as a defendant.
Allegations of Misleading Consumers
The lawsuit states Bai’s labeling is false and misleading, saying the drinks contain only natural ingredients and flavored with natural ingredients. But, the lawsuit alleges all Bai products contain artificial flavors in violation of state and federal law, specifically a synthetic chemical flavoring compound identified as malic acid. This is apparently an inexpensive synthetic chemical used in processed food product to make them taste like “tangy fresh fruit.”
Timberlake came on board Bai as an investor in 2016. His title with the company is “Chief Flavor Officer.” At the time he issued a statement saying he entered the partnership because he wanted to “help people put better ingredients in their bodies without sacrificing taste.” The lawsuit also states that Timberlake’s monetary assistance, creative input and marketing helped Bai elevate its name recognition and image.
In addition, the complaint says Timberlake knew about this fraudulent claim of marketing artificially flavored drinks as naturally flavored. Timberlake also helped the scheme by promoting the products on a nationally aired commercial during the 2017 Super Bowl, which was seen my millions, the lawsuit states. The lawsuit is seeking an order requiring Bai Brands and Timberlake to relinquish any money acquired from the improper and misleading labeling and marketing, as well as punitive damages.
The Role of Class Action Lawsuits
Proponents of so-called tort reform often falsely portray class action lawsuits as “frivolous.” But, many of these individuals fail to understand to class-action lawsuits are probably the only option available for consumers who wish to hold large corporations accountable for unethical business practices, defective products and wrongdoing. These lawsuits are an opportunity for people to band together and hold wrongdoers accountable. Our California class action lawyers work hard to protect consumer rights, and stand up against negligent corporations.