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If You Bought A Near East Brand Product, You May Have a Legal Claim

Schubert Jonckheer & Kolbe is pursuing a class action on behalf of purchasers of certain Near East brand food products, including Near East Brand rice pilaf, couscous and quinoa mixes, alleging that the packaging violates laws prohibiting food manufacturers from selling their products in boxes containing a substantial amount of empty space, referred to as “slack fill.”

Overly large packaging, i.e., packaging containing a substantial amount of “slack fill,” can be deceptive even if the package label correctly states the weight of the contents contained therein. Busy consumers may not always read labels carefully or be able to gauge the volume of a product based upon a statement of the weight.

Congress and the California legislature have sought to prevent such deception by generally making overly large food containers unlawful, unless the packaging allows consumers to actually see the contents or unless the slack fill is justifiable, because it is deemed “functional” under the law. One example of “functional” slack fill is the empty space that is created in a container due to ordinary subsidence of the contents during shipping and handling.

Consumers who purchased products packaged in boxes containing “nonfunctional” slack fill may be entitled to restitution or damages.

If you purchased a Near East brand product, and believe that the product was sold in a box with “nonfunctional slack fill,” you may have a legal claim.  Please fill out the form below for a free legal consultation.


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Attorneys with Schubert Jonckheer & Kolbe LLP are licensed in the states of California, New York, and Massachusetts.