Trader Joe's was hit by two lawsuits over alleged high levels of lead and cadmium in its chocolate.
Consumer Reports found that two of its own-brand dark chocolate bars contain potentially unsafe quantities of heavy metals.
There is no federal limit on how much lead or cadmium chocolate can contain, but some states set guidelines.
Trader Joe's was hit by two proposed class-action lawsuits on Wednesday, claiming that the retailer acted illegally by failing to warn customers that its dark chocolate contained high levels of lead and cadmium.
The lawsuits relate to two of Trader Joe's own-brand products: its 72% cacao dark chocolate and its Dark Chocolate Lover's 85% cacao chocolate. Testing by Consumer Reports in December suggested that the chocolate bars contain high quantities of heavy metals.
Both lawsuits allege that Trader Joe's must have been aware of the levels of lead and cadmium in its chocolate and accused the retailer of "deceptive" practices. The suits say that consumers would have paid less for the products if they had known about the heavy metals they reportedly contain. Both plaintiffs demand a trial by jury.
One plaintiff, New York City resident Tamakia Herd, alleged in her lawsuit that by selling the chocolate, Trader Joe's "chose to ignore the health of the consuming public in pursuit of profit." The suit, which Insider has reviewed, was filed in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.
She said that this was in spite of the fact that the retailer has "long maintained an image of catering to health-conscious consumers."
Herd, who said that she eats around two bars of dark chocolate a week, accused Trader Joe's of having "a reckless disregard for its consumers' health and well-being."
The other plaintiff, Nassau County resident Thomas Ferrante, said that Trader Joe's "could not be unaware of the existence of lead and cadmium" in the products. Ferrante filed his suit in the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York. It has been seen by Insider.
Trader Joe's did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment, made outside of regular working hours.
Consumer advocacy nonprofit Consumer Reports tested 28 bars of dark chocolate from brands including Hershey's, Lily's, Trader Joe's, and Lindt.
There are no federal limits on how much lead and cadmium most foods can contain, so Consumer Reports instead based its findings on the levels of heavy metals that the state of California classes as the maximum allowable dose.
The results found that for 23 of the bars, eating an ounce a day means an adult would consume more lead and cadmium than California authorities generally consider safe.
Consumer Reports' testing found that just one ounce of Trader Joe's 72% cacao dark chocolate contained 192% of the level of lead and 36% of the level of cadmium that California classes as the maximum allowable dose. For the Dark Chocolate Lover's 85% cacao chocolate, these levels were 127% for lead and 229% for cadmium.
Lead can build up in the body over time and contribute to ailments including high blood pressure, joint and muscle pain, headaches, and memory problems, according to the Mayo Clinic. "Even small amounts of lead can cause serious health problems," the Mayo Clinic says, noting that it is particularly dangerous for pregnant women and children.
Cadmium can similarly build up in the body, according to the CDC. It says eating large amounts of cadmium can cause vomiting and diarrhea, and that repeated exposure to the metal may lead to kidney disease, fragile bones, and cancer.
Consumer Reports found that cacao plants take up cadmium from the soil, while lead seems to contaminate the beans as they dry in the sun after being picked. Because dark chocolate contains more cacao than milk chocolate, it generally has higher levels of lead and cadmium as a result.
Ferrante's attorneys also filed a lawsuit against the Hershey Company last week on behalf of another Nassau County resident related to the levels of lead and cadmium in one Hershey's-brand chocolate bar and two Lily's-brand chocolate bars.
Sacaleches electrico(2023-01-30 16:50:28Z)
This article gives the light in which we can observe the reality. This is very nice one and gives indepth information. Thanks for this nice article.REPLY
I am very happy to discover your post as it will become on top in my collection of favorite blogs to visit.REPLY
Call Girl Kalyan(2023-02-04 11:42:50Z)
nice blog i like it and thanks for sharing I was looking for it for a long time. So glad to find it here..REPLY
Thanks for posting such an informative article, thanks for sharing informative post
web para publicar historias(2023-02-06 19:23:42Z)
Nice to read your article! I am looking forward to sharing your adventures and experiences.REPLY
Lista de emails de empresas(2023-02-08 08:54:03Z)
Hello, I have browsed most of your posts. This post is probably where I got the most useful information for my research. Thanks for posting, maybe we can see more on this. Are you aware of any other websites on this subject.REPLY
universidad privada(2023-02-26 12:20:47Z)
Thanks for a wonderful share. Your article has proved your hard work and experience you have got in this field. Brilliant .i love it reading.REPLY
basketball videogame(2023-02-28 17:11:50Z)
I really enjoyed reading this post, big fan. Keep up the good work andplease tell me when can you publish more articles or where can I read more on the subject?REPLY
two player basketball game(2023-03-01 09:51:14Z)
You know your projects stand out of the herd. There is something special about them. It seems to me all of them are really brilliant!REPLY
Agencia inmobiliaria Almería(2023-03-01 13:14:53Z)
Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic.REPLY
online game(2023-03-01 14:08:14Z)
Thank you for taking the time to publish this information very useful!REPLY
juguetes educativos(2023-03-02 09:19:00Z)
Thank you very much for keep this information.REPLY
buy cialis online in usa 19 Commercial aluminum phosphate adjuvants have IEP values in the 4REPLY
extractor de leche(2023-03-06 16:18:37Z)
Nice Informative Blog having nice sharing..REPLY
juan miguel enamorado macias(2023-03-19 08:28:54Z)
Love to read it,Waiting For More new Update and I Already Read your Recent Post its Great Thanks.REPLY