The Hain Celestial Group’s Coconut Dream milk-style drink is the subject of a proposed class action lawsuit that alleges the product is misleadingly marketed to health-conscious consumers despite that the fact it’s essentially saturated fat-filled coconut oil in water and can increase the risk of cardiovascular illness.
Filed in California’s Southern District, the 81-page case kicks off by noting the American Heart Association is among the health watchdogs who have warned and advised against the consumption of coconut oil given that it “has no known offsetting favorable effects” in the fight against heart disease. The lawsuit, citing numerous studies, argues that the defendant’s Coconut Dream beverage, given its makeup, increases the risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, and other potentially life-threatening ailments despite Hain’s well-targeted marketing and label claims for the 32-ounce product.
“Hain employs a strategic marketing campaign intended to convince consumers that the Product is healthy, despite that it is almost entirely composed of unhealthy saturated fat (or saturated fat and added sugar),” the complaint reads.
More specifically, Hain’s labeling of Coconut Dream is false and misleading in that it’s “designed to conceal or distract consumers” from realizing the product is high in saturated fat, the lawsuit says. For instance, Hain supposedly claims on its product label that Coconut Dream is a “Cholesterol Free Food,” which the lawsuit says misleadingly suggests to consumers that the mere absence of cholesterol makes the product healthy when, in truth, the beverage is rife with saturated fat.
All told, the complaint argues that the totality of Hain’s marketing and labeling for its Coconut Dream beverage aims to convey the message to a reasonable consumer that the product is healthy. Instead of receiving the expected benefit from purchasing a product with “actual healthful qualities,” consumers, the lawsuit alleges, have been deceived by Hain through its marketing and label claims and the omission of material health information.