Class Action Lawsuit Alleges Whey Protein Manufacturers Engaged in “Protein Spiking”
On August 25, 2014, a class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York on behalf of consumers that purchased the protein supplement “Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein. The named Defendants are United States Nutrition, Inc., Healthwatchers, Inc., and parent company, NBTY, Inc.
The Complaint alleges that, Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein does not have as much protein as the label represents. More specifically, the pleading alleges that Defendants engaged in “protein-spiking,” a process by which manufacturers add less expensive ingredients to boost a protein product’s nitrogen content while reducing manufacturing costs. The issue is whether consumers were deceived by manufacturers into believing they are receiving more whey protein than is actually contained in the product.
The product labeling claims to have 30 grams of protein per serving, but this number allegedly also includes free form amino acids. Plaintiffs’ counsel alleges that testing reveals that the actual content per serving of whey protein is 21.5 grams once the “protein-spiking” agents are removed.
The American Herbal Products Association has condemned the act of protein-spiking. Plaintiffs are seeking class certification and compensatory damages.