Hershey’s Sued For Underfilling Candy Boxes

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By Cooking Panda

Instead of kisses, Hershey’s just got slapped with a federal lawsuit. Who could hold a grudge against the chocolate manufacturer that brought us Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Kit Kats and Hershey’s syrup?

Apparently, someone who loves Hershey’s products a little too much. A man in Missouri filed a federal class action lawsuit against Hershey’s for “slack-fill,” or the empty space inside the packaging. Now, here’s a guy who really cares about his candy. 

The complaint he filed even includes nifty photographs of Reese’s Pieces and Whoppers boxes he cut open to show just how underfilled they are.

 According to the plaintiff, the Reese’s box he photographed is underfilled by 29 percent, while the Whoppers box is underfilled by a whopping 41 percent. 

Not sure how he came up with those very precise figures; but in his defense, there really is quite a bit of space left in those boxes. 

He claims that the size of the boxes misleads shoppers by making them think there’s more candy inside than is actually the case. 

We’ve all felt our hearts break just a little when that bag of chips we rip open is only a third full. But this guy is taking popular resentment of slack-fill to the next level. 

Slack-fill sometimes has a justifiable purpose, like keeping extra air in a bag to preserve the contents. However, the extra space in the Reese’s and Whoppers packaging isn’t necessary to protect the candy, according to Consumerist. 

Hershey’s doesn’t deny that the packages are underfilled, but sees no problem with this since the number of candies and the weight of the product is printed on the box.

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“It is not possible to view the product packaging without also seeing the net weight and quantity disclosures,” Hershey’s motion to dismiss the case argues. 

Moreover, even customers who don’t know how much 113 grams of candy actually is can pick up the box and feel the weight. The motion to dismiss also argues that the fact that candy rattles inside the box should make it obvious that the box is not filled all the way. 

“Consumers are well aware of the fact that substantially all commercial packaging contains some empty space,” Hershey’s attorneys said, according to Consumerist. 

Still, Hershey’s defense did not persuade the judge, who said that the cases cited by the Hershey’s attorneys did not apply in Missouri. 

Perhaps this case will have a happy ending for the chocolate lovers out there who want their box of candy 100 percent full. In fact, who doesn’t want this? 

Sources: Consumerist , Hershey's Defense   / Photo credit: Ged Caroll/Flickr

Tags: Class Action Lawsuit, Hershey's, Reese's Pieces, whoppers
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