Kellogg Company has agreed to pay $20 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that alleges the cereal maker marketed cereals and snack bars with excessive amounts of sugar in a deceptive manner The company has also agreed to change its marketing strategies related to these products.
The federal suit was filed in 2016 in California, and related specifically to Raisin Bran, Smart Start, Crunchy Nut, Krave and Frosted Mini-Wheat cereals, as well as Nutri-Grain breakfast bars. The suit stated that Kellogg deceived consumers with statements like “wholesome goodness” and “lightly sugared." Many of these products contain as much as 40 percent added sugars.
The company did not admit any wrongdoing, but will no longer use phrases such as "healthy", "wholesome" or "nutritious" on these products for at least three years. The settlement will be split between $12 million in cash compensation and $8 million in vouchers for Kellogg products, which consumers will be able to access through a website. Kellogg’s attempted to dismiss the suit in 2017, but was denied.