April 2022

Sprout Foods, Inc. Emerges Victorious in Heavy Metals Class Action

United States - New Jersey

Sprout Foods, Inc. won a significant victory when the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey dismissed a putative class action regarding alleged heavy metals in Sprout’s baby food products.

In February 2021, the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Reform's Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy released a report asserting that many baby food products contained high levels of heavy metals (e.g., mercury, lead, arsenic, cadmium). Following the subcommittee's report, the plaintiffs' bar filed a wave of class actions against the major baby food companies.

In Kimca v. Sprout Foods, Inc., six named plaintiffs alleged that Sprout's baby food products contained dangerous (but undefined) levels of heavy metals, citing the subcommittee's report and certain product testing allegedly performed by plaintiffs' counsel. The Faegre Drinker team moved to dismiss, and on April 25, 2022, Judge Stanley R. Chesler granted Sprout's motion, holding that plaintiffs lacked standing because (a) plaintiffs had not sufficiently alleged that the products contained unsafe levels of heavy metals, (b) plaintiffs did not suffer any economic injury, and (c) plaintiffs lacked standing to seek injunctive relief because they were aware of the alleged presence of heavy metals in the products. 

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