Bacardi U.S.A., Inc. is among the defendants in a proposed class action that alleges its Bombay Sapphire-brand gin is made with grains of paradise, the use of which in alcohol is illegal in Florida.
Filed in Miami-Dade County circuit court, the case against Bacardi and Winn Dixie Liquors explains that one of the 10 hand-selected botanicals with which Bombay Sapphire gin is made is grains of paradise. The ingredient, a plant native to swampy habitats along Africa’s western coast, is known for its warming and digestive properties when consumed, according to the lawsuit, and is used worldwide for medicinal purposes. Specifically, the suit says grains of paradise is used “to treat impotence and to stimulate miscarriages when a pregnancy was unwanted.”
562.455 Adulterating liquor; penalty.—Whoever adulterates, for the purpose of sale, any liquor, used or intended for drink, with cocculus indicus, vitriol, grains of paradise, opium, alum, capsicum, copperas, laurel water, logwood, brazil wood, cochineal, sugar of lead, or any other substance which is poisonous or injurious to health, and whoever knowingly sells any liquor so adulterated, shall be guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s.775.083, or s. 775.084.
“As a result of the foregoing, the Plaintiff and other similarly situated persons have been damaged,” the suit claims, alleging that Winn-Dixie, for its part, “knowingly sells the Adulterated Liquor” in contravention of Florida law.