Metal in Dark Chocolate: A Lawsuit Against Hershey in the United States

Hershey, a company that makes chocolate, has been sued in the US over claims that it sells products with too much metal in them. Christopher Lazazzaro filed a lawsuit against the company, saying that it misled customers by not telling them how much lead and cadmium were in three bars of dark chocolate.

He said that if he had known, he would not have bought the items. Some studies suggest that the antioxidants and low amounts of sugar in dark chocolate could help keep the heart from getting sick.

But the lawsuit talks about recent findings from the US magazine Consumer Reports (CR), which looked for lead and cadmium in 28 dark chocolate bars. The magazine said that 23 of them, like Hershey, Godiva, and Lindt chocolate, had “relatively higher levels” of the metals.

“For 23 of the bars, eating just an ounce (28g) a day would put an adult over a level that public health authorities and CR’s experts say may be harmful for at least one of those heavy metals,” it claimed.

Hershey’s Special Dark bar and Lily’s 70% bar both had a lot of lead, and Lily’s 85% bar had a lot of both lead and cadmium. Sheeba Majmudar, a nutritionist, told the BBC that heavy metals can be in any food if there are a lot of them in the soil.

“Currently there are no food laws stating that all food batches need to be tested – until they make you sick. While no level of toxins is safe, it is always the ‘buyer beware’ slogan that comes to mind,” she added.

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Mr. Lazazzaro’s lawsuit, which was filed Wednesday in a federal court in New York, says that he would not have bought or wanted to pay less for Hershey’s Special Dark Mildly Sweet Chocolate, Lily’s Extra Dark Chocolate 70% Cocoa, and Lily’s Extreme Dark Chocolate bars.

Last June, Hershey bought the company Lily’s, which makes low-sugar treats. At the time, Hershey said that Lily’s was a “great addition to Hershey’s growing portfolio of better-for-you snacking brands.”

“Consumers rely on [Hershey] to be truthful regarding the ingredients,” the lawsuit argues. It adds that “people are concerned with what is in the food that they are putting into their bodies,” while parents and carers are “concerned with what they are feeding to children in their care”.

In the proposed class action lawsuit, Mr. Lazazzaro wants Hershey to pay him at least $5 million (£4.2 million) in damages… Follow us only on Lee Daily for more news like this.

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