The Giant Crunching Sound

Shiver me timbers & loosen me teeth!

Shiver me timbers & loosen me teeth!

On what tree does the Crunch Berry grow? I can tell you one thing: if it ever did exist—which it doesn’t—it would certainly grow nuts, just like the one who sued Pepsico, the makers of Cap’n Crunch with Crunch Berries for misleading her into thinking that Crunch Berries were actual berries, when in fact there is no such thing as a “crunch berry” nor are there any real berries in the Cap’n's Berry Crunch.

Have we descended so far into individual non-responsibility that brands must make sure that even the most dimwitted among us (and the lawyers who are ready to take their cases) could not possibly be confused? As the Latin speakers among us might say, “Q.E.D., muthafuckas.”

So what is the law on what food labels are considered misleading and how do you really know what you’re getting when you buy them?

The Food and Drug Administration regulates food labels and nutritional content, and the Federal Trade Commission ensures that no labels are misleading to consumers. Under regulations, all consumers need do if they are confused by the name of the product or picture on the package is to turn the box over and read the actual ingredients. Clearly this is something that you should (but rarely) do to know what the nutritional value of what you’re buying anyway.

As it turns out, there are no misleading health benefit claims on the box of Cap’n Crunch other than, “This mythical sea Cap’n may shove a giant spoon in your face!”And fortunately for all of us, the court found that this is not something that could or would deceive a reasonable consumer. Argh!

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