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Nutella in France: Why Not A French Class Action Suit Against Nutella?

French Nutella isn’t any healthier than American Nutella

Class action suit won after settlement with Ferraro, maker of Nutella

True story: a mom of a 4-year-old in America took Ferraro Nutella to court and won. Read here details from website The Consumerist. If you live in California and bought Nutella between years 2008-2012 you can join into the class action suit.

I really applaud this verdict because it:

  • Makes food companies more responsible for their marketing and labeling claims
  • Makes consumers more aware that Nutella is not a healthy food nor a ‘health food’
  • Makes parents more knowledgeable about the food they feed their children
  • Makes kids, especially teenagers who influence the home’s food purchases, understand that Nutella is not healthy

I am thinking of starting a class action suit in France (LOL). The same ‘healthy’ marketing and labeling policies are happening here in France with French Nutella.

Similar marketing policies with Nutella in France

If you look at the label in the picture of Nutella on top of this article you can see:

  • Lait écrémé –skimmed milk (making it seem as if the food is lower in fat when it is >30.0% fat)
  • Pictures of nuts- nuts are healthy right?
  • Pate a tartiner aux noisettes –Spread with nuts

Actually, Nutella’s ingredients differ depending on what country it is being sold in.

In France, ‘French’ Nutella contains: 55.2 % sugar, 30.3% vegetable oil (of this 17.3% palm oil and 13.0% nut oil), 7.4% powdered cacao, 6.6% powdered whole milk, 0.8% lactoserum, 0.3-0.7% emulsifier, and <0.7% aroma. (source Wikipedia)

This is not a healthy food. It should not be marketed as such. If a consumer is trying to make healthy food choices in the supermarket and see the word “skimmed milk” on the label, this could make the product appear as a food choice lower in fat and thus healthier. I personally feel this is deceptive marketing.

Nutella can be a part of a healthy diet, in moderation, but watch out for Nutella addiction!

Here in France, kids eat Nutella on their bread slices for both breakfast and the sacred French gouter (snack). There is pressure from kids, who also influence the home’s food purchases, to buy Nutella.

As with any food, moderation is key.

Nutella, a food high in sugar and fat, can be enjoyed as part of a healthy diet, but it should be limited to moderation. What is moderation? Once a week, twice a week? If you are addicted to Nutella moderation is a hard word to adhere to.

If you or your kids are finding it hard to stop the Nutella habit, read here on “How my Daughter got over her Nutella Addiction.” You may have a good laugh and there are other links in the article on how Nutella markets itself as a healthy food when it isn’t.

In New Jersey, there is another class action suit starting against Nutella. What do you think? Have things gone too far? Have consumers finally gotten the right message about Nutella?


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4 Responses to Nutella in France: Why Not A French Class Action Suit Against Nutella?

  1. Natalia Campione June 29, 2013 at 09:33 #

    I hate stupid people who do this to the Ferrero company. Who do you people think you are? Do you think you’re going to bully the company into changing their product because some idiot Americans can’t read the nutrition facts and ingredients? Michele Ferrero is a billionaire; he deserves the money he has because many Europeans, including me, LOVE our Nutella. Jiff and some other brands are making “healthy” versions of the hazelnut spread, but NOTHING can compare to our Nutella. Don’t sue them. Don’t ruin it for the millions of Nutella lovers.
    And another thing: look at hamburger ads (or McDonald’s ads with their hamburgers in it). Look at how they put the lettuce, tomatoes, etc. on it to make it seem healthy. Because obviously without lettuce and tomatoes, it’s unhealthy. But those hamburgers have 1,000+ calories. You see, if you do this thing called reading the nutrition facts, you save yourself the abundance of calories and the energy it would take to sue the company. However I’ve never heard of people suing McDonalds. No, of course not McDonalds. If McD’s went out of business, where else would you Americans go to to get fat and then blame a European company?
    Show me where Ferrero said Nutella was healthy. Did they say it? No. Because that would be a lie. They never said Nutella is healthy. It isn’t legally a chocolate spread, but it definitely contains chocolate and 100+ hazelnuts. So you can already tell that it isn’t healthy. So why buy it, waste it, and then sue the company for your mistake?
    You Americans will eat all the disgusting, unhealthy American foods shamelessly, but as soon as a product from another continent that millions of people have loved since the 60s comes along, you start suing because you Americans aren’t only hungry for unhealthy foods like greasy burgers and fake oily pizza, but you guys are money hungry. You people will do anything to sue a company or person to get money. Eat dark chocolate, peanut butter, knock-off healthy Nutella, but stay away from our Nutella. Please don’t even try to change something that has been around for 40+ years. Unless Michele Ferrero decides to change his product himself, don’t bully him into changing it. If you don’t like it, don’t buy it. Too much fat for your already-fat stomach? Don’t buy it. Don’t even know if it’s healthy? Either check the ingredients and nutrition facts, or don’t buy it. Oh, and France is in Europe, too. French people like Nutella. Don’t ruin it for them because you’re an inconsiderate asshole.

  2. Gerhard Engler April 30, 2012 at 11:36 #

    the label says “lait écrèmé”, this means “skimmed milk”, not “creamy milk”.

    • mbrighton April 30, 2012 at 12:17 #

      Merci Gerhard! As you can tell I am neither a French nor milk expert. Chez nous we buy lait demi-écrèmé which I mistakenly ‘recorded’ in my brain as low-fat milk. (In the states we have whole milk, low fat milk and skim milk), and I translated low-fat milk as demi-écrèmé rather than demi-entier (which is how I would translate low fat). I messed up-thank you for bringing it to my attention and I am going to fix the article.
      This also brings up another point on how the label is deceptive. I can imagine as a consumer looking on the supermarket shelves on what products to buy. If I saw a word “skim milk” on a product that I could believe is high in fat (like Nutella), it would make me think that it would be okay to buy (because it is made with skim milk, no fat).
      Actually the milk added into Nutella is powdered milk, the same thing as normal skim milk, but it is ‘dehydrated’ milk.
      Thanks again for your comment. Gerhard, do you like Nutella? Just wondering….


  1. How My Daughter Got Over Her Nutella Addiction | brightonyourhealth - April 28, 2012

    […] Update:  Ferraro, maker of Nutella, has settled a class action suit brought by a California mom who believed that Nutella was marketed as healthy, when it isn’t.  I am thinking of starting a class action suit in France (LOL) because I believe the same biased marketing practices are happening here. Read my article “Why Not a French Class Action Suit Against Nutella?” […]

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