Subway misleading with ’100% tuna’ sandwiches? Fast-food chain faces lawsuit over ’fraud’

  • Fast-food restaurant, Subway, will likely face a lawsuit for 'misleading' its customers with its advertised ‘100% tuna’ sandwiches
  • The lawsuit says Subway is ‘using other fish species, chicken, pork, and cattle’ meat in its advertised ‘100% tuna’ products

Livemint
First Published13 Jul 2022
Fast-food chain Subway is facing a lawsuit over its advertised ‘100% tuna’ sandwich
Fast-food chain Subway is facing a lawsuit over its advertised ‘100% tuna’ sandwich(REUTERS)

Subway, a fast-food restaurant popular for its sandwiches, is likely to be sued for misleading customers with its "100% tuna" sandwiches. Reason: Subway is allegedly using other fish species, chicken, pork, and cattle meat in its advertised "100% tuna" sandwiches. Following the fraud allegations, a federal judge in California has said that Subway can be sued over claims that it is misleading customers.

The lawsuit was originally brought in January 2021 by Oakland-area resident Nilima Amin. It claims that Subway's tuna products "partially or wholly lack tuna as an ingredient" and "contain other fish species, animal products, or miscellaneous products aside from tuna."

The allegations of fraud in Subway's "100% tune" sandwiches are based on testing performed at a UCLA marine biology laboratory. Amin has stated that the testing has shown that Subway made its tuna product with no tuna fish.

However, in June 2021, the petitioner changed her petition to whether Subway served "100% sustainably caught skipjack and yellowfin tuna", as it advertised.

'NO TUNA IN TUNA SANDWICH'

UCLA's Barber Lab revealed that 19 of 20 samples had "no detectable tuna DNA sequences", while all 20 had chicken DNA, 11 had pork DNA, and 7 had cattle DNA.

Reacting to the claims, Subway has said that the other DNAs could be could have been due to "cross-contact when making sandwiches or from eggs in mayonnaise".

However, the judge said that even if Subway's statement is true, the "100% tuna" claim might still be wrong.

The judge said, "Although it is possible that Subway's explanations are the correct ones, it is also possible that these allegations refer to ingredients that a reasonable consumer would not reasonably expect to find in a tuna product."

'IT IS 100% TUNA: SUBWAY'

Adamant on the "100% tuna" advertisement, Subway reiterated that the restaurant "serves 100% tuna".

"We are disappointed the Court felt it couldn't dismiss the plaintiffs' reckless and improper lawsuit at this stage. However, we are confident that Subway will prevail when the Court has an opportunity to consider all the evidence," Business Insider quoted a Subway spokesperson as saying.

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