Customers sue Wegmans for selling vanilla ice cream made with no vanilla

Two customers filed a lawsuit against East Coast grocery chain Wegmans, claiming the company’s brand of vanilla ice cream does not actually contain any vanilla.

The Wegmans brand of vanilla ice cream is sold online and at 90 stores mainly on the East Coast, according to the complaint that was filed in early October with the U.S. District Court Southern District of New York.

The two attorneys for each customer state that the store’s ice cream labeling is misleading because its ingredients do not list vanilla but rather “natural flavor.”The lawsuit claims that customers expect vanilla ice cream to contain real vanilla flavoring.

“The products were not flavored exclusively from the characterizing ingredient but from flavor compounds blended together and labeled as ‘natural flavor,’” the lawsuit states.

It further alleges that Wegmans was aware of the misleading labeling and did it to “secure economic advantage in the marketplace against competitors by appealing to customers who value products with sufficient amounts of the characterizing ingredients…”

In the court papers, the customers’ lawyers requested “monetary damages and interest” as well as “other and further relief as the court deems just and proper.”

This story was reported from Los Angeles.