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Costco Wholesale Corporation Consumer Litigation

On January 10, 2018, the District Court granted defendant's motion to dismiss.  In issuing his opinion, Judge Román correctly found, as plaintiffs argued, that the United States Department of Agriculture’s (“USDA”) Poultry Products Inspection Act (“PPIA”) does not preempt state law claims that do not impose requirements that are different from or additional to the PPIA.  However, plaintiffs have appealed the Court's conclusion that plaintiffs sought to impose requirements that are different from the USDA's regulations.  The briefs are in the process of being filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.  No argument date on the appeal has been set yet.

On October 11, 2016, Wolf Popper filed a class action lawsuit against Costco Wholesale Corporation (“Costco”) on behalf of purchasers of cans of Costco’s Kirkland Signature Premium Chunk Chicken Breast (“Kirkland Canned Chicken”).  On March 1, 2017, Wolf Popper filed an amended complaint alleging that the packaging and label of Kirkland Canned Chicken deceptively and misleadingly overstates to consumers the amount of chicken within each can.  Specifically, the 12.5 oz. cans fail to properly disclose to consumers that they contain only approximately 7 ounces of chicken, and are therefore more than 40% water, in violation of the deceptive acts and practices statutes of New York, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts.  On April 3, 2017, Costco filed a motion to dismiss the amended complaint.

For further information about this case, contact:

Patricia I. Avery

Matthew Insley-Pruitt

Elissa Hachmeister

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