Ferrero, the maker of Nutella, which happens to be the only chocolate spread that has its own world celebration day – World Nutella Day is celebrated February 5th - has lost a $3.5 million class action lawsuit filed by a California mother who was “shocked” to discover that a chocolate spread was not healthy.
Did you know that all the Nutella sold in the US comes from a plant in Brantford, Ontario with Californians being the per capita biggest consumers of Nutella in the US.
In her lawsuit filed last year a San Diego mother said she was “shocked” to learn that the hazelnut chocolate spread she was feeding her husband and 4-year-old daughter was full of sugar and fat. She said she felt “betrayed” when she learned the healthiest part of a Nutella breakfast was the bread and milk that children ate with it – probably white bread and whole milk too, eh?
She won, and in the US, Ferrero will give every consumer who also feel betrayed $4.00 for their jar of Nutella provided they also declare that the cannot read the nutritional label on the back of the jar. LOL. Then they take there $4.00 and buy another jar I would think…
What did it in for Nutella? The claim that Nutella could be part of a “healthy breakfast.” Apparently there are some ads in the US which claim Nutella is healthy, or something like that. Full of energy (which would lead me to assume full of calories), I’m not 100% sure.
Sure, anyone capable of reading a label – as my kids do in the grocery stores at the ages of 7 and 5 (and they understand what they are reading) would see that Nutella has a lot of sugar and a lot of fat in it.
As part of the settlement, the front label of Nutella jars will now include info on the fat, sugar and calories of the product.
Oddly enough, Nutella Canada, which is a sponsor of the Canadian Soccer Association, advocates eating a balanced breakfast on its website www.nutella.ca but without directly saying the spread should be part of it.
From their FAQ section:
Q: What is NUTELLA®?
A: NUTELLA® (pronounced “new-tell-uh”) is a deliciously unique spread made from hazelnuts, cocoa, and skim milk. NUTELLA® is a great choice for kids as part of a nutritious breakfast. It contains no preservatives, no artificial colours and is a source of Vitamin E.
All true and very clear…
Those litigious Americans. I’m not sure if this was a good thing or a frivolous lawsuit. Yes it’s good to bring attention for those who may not be able to read labels or have common sense, but then again, Nutella is yummy and most people I spoke to who eat are were perfectly aware that one tablespoon full was plenty and that 2 tablespoons contained the same amount of sugar, etc, as a chocolate bar.
A two-tablespoon serving of Nutella contains 200 calories, 11 grams of fat, 3.5 of which are saturated and 21 grams of sugar. To put that into perspective, a typical chocolate and nut candy bar has 250 to 300 calories and 12 to 16 grams of fat.
Might I recommend the Marshmallow spread instead to that mom instead?
(Please don’t sue me).
So how does Nutella compare to Peanut Butter – you might be surprised…
Nutella per Tablespoon (19g):
6g Fat (2g saturated Fat)
11g Carbs (1g fibre/10g sugar)
0% Vitamin A
0% Vitamin C
10% Vitamin E
Kraft Smooth Peanut Butter per Tablespoon (15g)
8g Fat (2g Saturated Fat)
4g Carbs (1g fibre/3g sugar)
0% Vitamin A
0% Vitamin C
0% Vitamin E
Eating Nutella over Kraft peanut butter (not my peanut butter of choice – I prefer a more natural kinds, like President Choice blue menu Just Peanuts) however with Nutella you eat 10 more calories, save 2g of fat, eat 65mg less sodium, eat 7g more carbs – admittedly more sugar - consume 2% more calcium and take in 10% more vitamin E.
Comments on this item made me laugh because Nutella in the US does have nutritional information on it, however the commercials were misleading stating it was healthy, or part of a healthy breakfast. Whatever it said, it’s chocolate and nuts and that should have set off bells for any parent.
For this post I turned to my trusty editor, 7-year-old Linus, and he read the post then asked me; “If Nutella is made with hazelnuts and chocolate, there is no way it is healthy, Daddy, but can we please buy some!” :)
Some comments I read while researching included;
“What? Chocolate for breakfast is unhealthy?”
“I’m suing McDonald’s because I had a Happy Meal and it didn’t make me happy”.
“I’m suing Axe because I used their deodorant spray and was not immediately surrounded by hot women”.
What are your thoughts, parents? Stupid lawsuit or poor advertising choices for this product?
Mmmmmm… Nutella crepes… For me, not the kids!