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Court Rules Against Tyson in False Advertising Case

Tyson’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit was rejected, allowing the case to move forward.
April 1, 2021

The District of Columbia Superior Court rejected Tyson’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by Organic Consumers Association (OCA) and Food & Water Watch against Tyson Foods. The lawsuit alleges that the company makes deceptive sustainability and animal welfare marketing claims about Tyson chicken products.

The lawsuit was filed in July 2019, under the District of Columbia Consumer Protection Procedures Act (CPPA). The nonprofits are represented by Animal Equality, Richman Law & Policy, and counsel for Food & Water Watch.

In rejecting Tyson’s motion to dismiss, the court ruled the nonprofit plaintiffs sufficiently alleged “injury to those consumers who have been or will be deceived by defendant’s alleged marketing and advertising.”

The court also rejected Tyson’s claim that the lawsuit violates the company’s First Amendment rights.

“Tyson’s practice of misrepresenting reality has extended from the meat aisle to the courtroom. The court was right to reject Tyson’s attempt to characterize its animal welfare claims as ‘mere opinions,’ since consumers don’t see them that way. Consumers rely on companies to convey truthful, factual information about their production practices – something Tyson has not been doing. We look forward to continuing to litigate this case.”

Sarah Hanneken, Legal Advocacy Counsel, Animal Equality

Read the court’s decision here and we’ll keep you updated on ongoing news about the case.

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