Hershey sued for selling Reese chocolates without ‘pretty’ decorations

YouTube videos show consumer frustration with the lack of decoration on Reese’s themed chocolates. (Chocolate world)

October usually brings with it a cavalcade of Halloween-themed candies reminiscent of bats, pumpkins or ghosts for candy lovers and those with a sweet tooth. But a new lawsuit alleges that snack company Hershey There’s a fine line between deliciously decorated Halloween candy and an unsightly chocolate and peanut butter mess.

These are several Hershey’s Reese’s peanut butter themed products that are advertised on packaging with decorative designs carved into the candy: the face of a smiling lantern, the eyes and mouth of a ghost, or the laces of a football.

Cynthia Kelly thought that that’s what they’ll give him When he bought a Reese’s Peanut Butter Pumpkin after seeing its packaging with a “cute” carved pumpkin near the supermarket cash register, the lawsuit says.

But the chocolates do not contain those decorations, the lawsuit says, adding that the packaging misled consumers like Kelly, who expected their Halloween-themed candies to have the same design.

Hershey spokesman Todd Scott said. Washington Post that the company does not comment on pending litigation.

The class action lawsuit, filed Thursday in Florida District Court, accuses Hershey of using packaging that falsely advertises decorations on Reese’s products. Kelly’s experience and numerous YouTube videos of consumers and food critics expressing frustration with undecorated chocolate were cited.

“It’s a trick, it’s not candy”says one reviewer, holding up a Reese’s white chocolate wrapper that features a white ghost with cut-out eyes and a mouth.

Hershey joins a long list of food companies that have faced lawsuits in recent years over the advertising of their products, with mixed results. In 2022, a class-action lawsuit accused Burger King of making its Whopper burgers appear larger in advertising than they were in real life.

Kellogg is facing multiple lawsuits alleging that it falsely advertised the strawberry content of its Strawberry Pop-Tarts. Customers also filed lawsuits over the marketing of Taco Bell’s Mexican pizza, Starbucks’ dragonfruit and mango lemonade, TGI Friday’s mozzarella sticks and Red Bull energy drinks.

Lawsuits against Taco Bell and Kellogg have been dismissed, while lawsuits against Starbucks and Burger King continue.. The cases against Red Bull and TGI Friday’s were settled. Kelly’s attorney, Anthony John Russo Jr., represented plaintiffs in lawsuits against Taco Bell and Burger King.

“Small situations – what some consider to be small situations – can lead to unbridled behavior by large corporations,” Russo previously said. Washington Post about the Burger King case.

Plaintiffs allege deception over Reese’s packaging, which features designs that are not on the product (REUTERS/Carlo Allegri)

The lawsuit against Hershey accuses the company of misleading customers and deceptive packaging as an attempt to increase sales. According to the lawsuit, previous versions of Reese’s candy containers of the same shape accurately depicted them with smooth, undecorated surfaces and no carved designs, and the packaging only changed two to three years ago.

Kelly wouldn’t have bought the Reese’s chocolate pumpkin if it weren’t for the attractive design, the lawsuit alleges. It also includes links to a dozen YouTube videos from other consumers who share Kelly’s frustrations.

One video notes that small text on Reese’s packaging describes the decorations cut into the chocolates as a “decorating suggestion.” Another video calls Reese’s undecorated chocolate pumpkin “deformed” and “faceless.”

“I’m stunned,” says another reviewer before taking a bite of the chocolate. “And the sad thing about it is that it’s quite nice,” he added.

Washington Post

Daniel Wu is a reporter on the Washington Post’s Morning Mix team. He joined the Post as a Metro editorial intern in 2022 and previously worked at the Seattle Times and San Jose Mercury News.

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