Famed American gum company Wrigley will settle a false advertising lawsuit over its Eclipse gum. The W.M. Wrigley Jr. corporation has agreed to pay a settlement of as much as $7 million and change how it markets and labels the Eclipse chewing gum. Plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit over the gum said claims about the natural germ-killing ingredients in the gum were misleading. Wrigley is a subsidiary of Mars, Inc.
According to a report by the Associated Press, the suit was filed in federal court in Florida. It specifically targeted the ads for the gum which claimed a new ingredient, magnolia bark extract, kills the germs that cause bad breath while competing gums merely mask bad breath. The ads and other marketing will be changed under the settlement. In addition, the company will pay between $6 million and $7 million to a fund that will be used reimburse consumers up to $10 each for the product and to cover other costs of the settlement.
According to PRNewswire, Paul Chibe, Wrigley Vice President and General Manager U.S. Gum and Mints made a statement about the settlement saying, "Wrigley has agreed to a settlement of this lawsuit to prevent further distraction to its business and denies any wrongdoing." Requests to the company for further comment went unanswered.
PRNewswire reports that for more information about the settlement, including the process for filing reimbursement claims and other options, consumers will be able to visit www.EclipseSettlement.com or http://www.rgrdlaw.com/.
The settlement must still be approved by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.