There are 33 grams of sugar in your health drink. Somebody call a lawyer

Vitaminwater makes promises it just can’t keep. So what if your health drink doesn’t reduce the risk of chronic diseases, improve joint function and boost mental and physical wellness? (They retracted that in a 2009 lawsuit.) No harm no foul. But that’s just not good enough for Truth In Advertising, a Connecticut-based group that fights […]

Vitaminwater makes promises it just can’t keep. So what if your health drink doesn’t reduce the risk of chronic diseases, improve joint function and boost mental and physical wellness? (They retracted that in a 2009 lawsuit.) No harm no foul. But that’s just not good enough for Truth In Advertising, a Connecticut-based group that fights against deceptive advertising.

If a “health” drink contains 33 grams of sugar in a 20 oz. bottle, we’re in trouble. Regardless, the group is looking to get some payback, much like the Red Bull suit that took place and ended with the company offering $10 to anyone who has purchased the energy beverage and were falsely convinced that indeed, it would give them wings.

Exagerated health claims already brought Coca-Cola, which owns Vitaminwater, to court earlier this month. They agreed to pay $1.2 million to end a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of residents of Florida, Ohio, Illinois, Missouri and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Before that though, Coca-Cola did actually change labels in compliance with the requests. Not good enough for Truth In Advertising.

“Ideally, what we want is for Coke to compensate consumers for being deceived, similar to the Red Bull settlement,” Bonnie Patten, the executive director of the group, told The Huffington Post.

The filing deadline is Nov. 3, and a judge must approve the settlement by Dec. 2. But even though Coca-Cola has said they’d like to reach an amicable agreement, consumers might not get a payout like the wingless Red Bull drinkers.

“All the things they said Coke has agreed to change, Coke has now put in writing, but in reality they had already done,” said Steve Gardner, who as litigation director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest filed the original lawsuit in 2009.“The settlement is worthless to anyone in the public interest, the class members and the consumers, but it’s very profitable for the lawyers who settled it.”

Maybe the public would be better off just taking vitamins, drinking water, and calling it a day.

 

[Vitaminwater photo by flickr user Cyril Attias]